NSW Premier marks 10,000 COVID-19 vaccination milestone at Westmead Hospital

Westmead Hospital radiographer Andrew Santoso receives his vaccine as NSW Minister for Health Brad Hazzard, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Member for Seven Hills Mark Taylor and WSLHD chief executive Graeme Loy watch. Picture: AAP/Dean Lewins

More than 10,300 frontline workers have received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine across the state with NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announcing the news at the Westmead Hospital vaccination hub this morning.

The Premier was joined for the milestone by NSW Minister for Health Brad Hazzard to thank the vaccination hub staff for their work.

The successful step in the vaccination rollout comes as NSW reached its 43rd day of no community transmission of COVID-19.

 “I’m really pleased to be at Westmead Hospital in Sydney this morning, congratulating and thanking the staff but also the people receiving the vaccine for the efficient way in which that process is running here at Westmead,” the Premier said.

“10,339 people have received the first dose of that extra layer of defence against the pandemic and I’m really pleased with that result.”

The Premier also met frontline staff receiving their vaccinations – including Westmead Hospital orderly Maddison Sara who is currently training to be an enrolled nurse.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian chats with Westmead Hospital orderly Maddi Sara during a tour of the Westmead Hospital vaccination hub. Picture: AAP/Dean Lewins

“When I first went to the vaccination clinic it was a bit scary because I don’t like needles. But it’s good knowing we’re getting one step closer to preventing the spread of the virus in the community,” Ms Sara said.

“It was pretty simple. I just had to sign a consent form, they sat me down for two minutes then brought me in, I got the vaccination, sat down for maybe 15 minutes and then I went back to work.

“When I talk to my friends or my colleagues about the COVID vaccine I’ll just tell them it’s the same as the flu vaccine. It didn’t really hurt.”

WSLHD chief executive Graeme Loy said he was grateful for the efforts of all staff running the hub.

“Our vaccination hub is running smoothly thanks to the hard work of many on the ground and behind the scenes,” Mr Loy said.

“Thank you also to the many frontline staff who have enthusiastically embraced this extra layer of protection for themselves, their family and their patients.”

Minister for Health Brad Hazzard, WSLHD chief executive Graeme Loy, NSW Health deputy secretary Susan Pearce, Seven Hills MP Mark Taylor and Premier Gladys Berejiklian.

NSW Minister for Health Brad Hazzard added his thanks to the staff at the Westmead, Liverpool and Royal Prince Alfred vaccination hubs.

“This has been effectively a wartime effort; strategically it’s been worked on to make sure every aspect has been covered off,” Mr Hazzard said.

“These hospitals have actually been getting staff coming in from a range of other metropolitan hospitals and also regional hospitals to not only receive their vaccinations, but also to understand the system that has been developed at each of these incredible, major hospitals.”

The Westmead Hospital vaccination hub is currently for frontline workers in phase 1a in the vaccination rollout. For more information about COVID-19, including when you will be eligible for the vaccine, visit the NSW Health website.