NSW Health has urged all residents to vaccinate if possible.
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The Southern Highland News asked Southern Highlands Division of General Practice spokesman Dr Vince Roche a few vaccination questions.
Southern Highland News: Does the benefits of the vaccine outweigh the risks of having Covid-19?
Dr Roche: Simple answer to a very simple question with a very complex answer - is YES.
This is particularly so for the older generation if they catch Covid-19. Not quite as much in younger people - but some still die (eg woman in her 30's who died in Sydney) or get "Long Covid".
Young people are still capable of spreading the virus to friends and family - indeed perhaps they are at a higher risk considering young adults and middle-aged adults are generally more socially mobile than the elderly.
SHN: Is it possible to transmit the virus (Covid-19) if fully vaccinated with AZ or Pfizer?
Dr Roche: Yes. It is thought to maybe be less infectious and perhaps likely to be less symptomatic. There is no conclusive data to prove this.
SHN: Can you still get the virus if you have been vaccinated?
Dr Roche: Yes. For example, the fully vaccinated Health Professional from Burradoo contracted the virus.
SHN: Any general advice for vaccine-hesitant people?
Dr Roche: Please get vaccinated - if not for yourself - to protect your family, your friends and the elderly - and to protect Australia and Australians from the financial strain of repeated lockdowns.
Current advice from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation dated July 24 states that anyone over the age of 18 should strongly consider getting vaccinated with any available vaccine including COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca.
"ATAGI reaffirms our previous advice that in a large outbreak, the benefits of the COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca are greater than the risk of rare side effects for all age groups," the statement read.
"People considering vaccination should be informed of the benefits and risks and give informed consent.
"People who receive COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca should be aware of the symptoms of thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS), and when to seek prompt medical attention. Early detection of TTS means that people can get treatment and this can improve their outcomes."
If you are eligible, please also come forward for vaccination as soon as possible. There are more than 100 NSW vaccination clinics and outreach locations across the state. Check your eligibility at https://covid-vaccine.healthdirect.gov.au/eligibility or speak to your GP to explore your options.