A range of information resources are provided here to assist GPs in vaccinating patients and preparing for care for COVID-19 patients in the community.
RACGP updated guidelines for home care:
On November 17, 2021, the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) published new guidelines for home care for patients with COVID-19. These updated guidelines provide information and advice on the following:
Assisting patients with a COVID-19 diagnosis
Identify medical and social risk factors and disease severity
Determination of suitability for home care and the appropriate monitoring protocol
Escalation of care if necessary
Ministry of Health resources:
The Department of Health has published several collections of resources on COVID-19 vaccination, vaccine adoption, and clinical guidelines from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (ATAGI). These resources are updated as new information becomes available, so GPs should ensure they have access to the latest versions.
Booster doses of the COVID-19 vaccine
A booster dose of COVID-19 is now recommended by the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (ATAGI) for those who:
18 years and older and
received the second dose of their first-dose vaccination against COVID-19 at least 6 months ago.
Booster doses are not mandatory but are recommended to help maintain immunity to COVID-19.
ATAGI does not currently recommend booster doses for:
Read ATAGI’s adviceCOVID-19 booster doses.
Third Dose Resources for the Immunocompromised
On October 8, 2021, the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (ATAGI) published a recommendation recommending a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine as part of the basic course in severely immunocompromised individuals. These resources will help primary care physicians with patients who need a third dose:
Requirements for healthcare workers exposed to COVID-19
The Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC), with advice from the Network on Communicable Diseases of Australia (CDNA) and the Infection Control Expert Group (ICEG), has endorsed a framework for worker permits and restrictions for healthcare workers.
The framework outlines nationally agreed recommendations that support reliable decision-making when determining suitable workplace restrictions and permits for an employee exposed to COVID-19. The framework provides guidance on how general practitioners and practice staff can avoid having to isolate a patient who visited the practice and later tested positive for COVID-19.
Vaccine product information
ATAGI and the Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand (CSANZ) published joint guidelines on the risk of myocarditis and pericarditis after Pfizer vaccination after a risk was observed in foreign studies, especially in men under 30 years of age after the second dose. the Pfizer product information has been updated to reflect this.
the Product Information (PI) for the AstraZeneca vaccine has been updated to include capillary leak syndrome (CLS) as a contraindication for the AstraZeneca vaccine. Providers should be aware of the information contained in the PI and individuals with a known history of CLS should not be vaccinated with AstraZeneca.
Patient information sheets
Information about AstraZeneca: https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/covid-19-vaccination-information-on-covid-19-astrazeneca-vaccine
According to your AstraZeneca: https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/covid-19-vaccination-after-your-astrazeneca-vaccine
Frequently asked questions about the Task Force’s ivermectin recommendation: https://covid19evidence.net.au/wp-content/uploads/NC19CET-Ivermectin-FAQs-20210826.pdf
Clinical guidelines and decision support
COVID-19 Vaccine – Clinical Considerations: https://www.health.gov.au/initiatives-and-programs/covid-19-vaccines/information-for-covid-19-vaccination-providers/covid-19-vaccine-clinical-considerations
Choosing the second dose in certain circumstances: https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/covid-19-vaccination-clinical-advice-on-the-use-of-a-different-covid-19-vaccine-as-the-second- dose
/ AMA / AusMed-Nachrichten. This material from the originating organization (s) may be of a point nature and may be edited for clarity, style and length. The views and opinions expressed are those of the author (s).