CANBERRA, AAP – A peak business group believes it can assist with the COVID-19 vaccine rollout through its network of members.
But the Business Council of Australia also says there needs to be clarity and consistency surrounding the health advice on vaccines.
The council’s chief executive Jennifer Westacott says 1.5 million Australians work for its members, like banks, supermarkets and other big employers.
“All are used to doing the flu vaccine,” Ms Westacott told Sky News, adding she would like to see their providers accredited to also administer the COVID vaccine.
She also believes there are many sites where a vaccination hub could be set up that would be convenient for people to get their jab, like a Bunnings car park, or a Westfield or Stockland shopping centre.
“Business can play a massive role in the mass vaccine rollout,” she said.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian agrees large corporates or large workplaces have the ability to bring people on their premises to vaccinate their workforces in a timely way.
“The challenge now is we don’t have enough supply, but once we do have enough supply, we need to make sure there are enough points of access, and that’s what we don’t have at the moment,” she told reporters in Sydney.
Ms Westacott would also like to see incentives to make people get vaccinated, like an indication on their smartphone to signal they have had the jab, so they would not have to abide by stay-at-home orders in a lockdown.
“And then obviously as part of that, to start thinking about how we gradually get back to some sort of state of normal,” she said.
“Now I know people say let’s not talk about that while we’re in this terrible situation, but we’ve got to plan for that, because business has to see the light at the end of the tunnel.”