Big change to Covid testing unveiled

From next July 1 GPs and pharmacies will be required to do the bulk of the state’s Covid jabs, with the number of state-run vaccination centres dropping from 39 to 12.State-run and private mass PCR testing sites will also drop from 265 to about 180 as rapid antigen tests are relied upon.Victoria’s state-run vaccination centres have delivered 6.26 million jabs since February 22, 2021, but Health Minister Martin Foley said the Covid response was now being scaled back to better match community need.“Victorians are choosing to get vaccinated closer to home and in their community thanks to the growing number of GPs and pharmacies delivering vaccines,” Mr Foley said.“Rapid antigen tests have changed the way most Victorians test, but most importantly, PCR and in-reach testing will still be available for our most vulnerable communities.“On behalf of the whole community, I want to recognise the extraordinary effort of every worker at our vaccination and testing sites for helping to keep us safe over the course of the pandemic.”State-run vaccination centres will continue in Hume, Wyndham, Melton, Whittlesea, Greater Dandenong, Frankston, Wodonga, Greater Geelong, Latrobe, Greater Shepparton, Ballarat and Greater Bendigo, Covid jabs remaining free for all Victorians.State-run testing sites will also be retained in areas with fewer private testing providers and GP respiratory clinics, building on the 21.2 million PCR tests already performed in Victoria since the start of the pandemic.

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