All West Australians aged 12 and over will be eligible for the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine as the state looks to overcome any hesitancy stalling its rollout.
Over-60s who are yet to receive their first vaccine dose will be offered the Pfizer jab at state-run clinics from Monday.
The move is expected to address hesitancy among seniors, some of whom have held off from taking the AstraZeneca vaccine, which has been linked to an extremely rare blood clotting condition.
About 60 per cent of the cohort is fully vaccinated and 84 per cent have had one dose.
It means all Western Australians will be able to access the Pfizer jab after eligibility was extended this week to residents aged 12 to 15.
“This week, we have thousands of Pfizer bookings available,” Premier Mark McGowan said on Tuesday.
“This is our way out of the pandemic. Do this for yourself, for your family and for the community.”
Over-60s who have already had one AstraZeneca dose will not be offered Pfizer, with authorities advising the vaccines should not be mixed.
GPs, who are part of the Commonwealth rollout, will continue to administer AstraZeneca to over-60s and not Pfizer.
About 59 per cent of West Australians aged 16 and over have so far received one vaccine dose and almost 40 per cent are fully vaccinated.
Mr McGowan has maintained WA won’t fully reopen to the rest of the nation until more than 80 per cent of residents are fully vaccinated.
It’s hoped 80 per cent vaccination will be achieved for over-16s by December, allowing the government to set a date for removing border restrictions in early-2022.
WA’s chief health officer, Andy Robertson, has advised the government that vaccinating young people is essential for the state to reopen.
“What he’s been saying to us this week is that the 12 to 16-year-old cohort [is] a big transmitter, as well as the 20 to 29-year-olds,” Health Minister Roger Cook said.
“We’ll want those rates to get up and get up high before we consider further easing of public health measures.
“We expect there’ll be a fast and enthusiastic uptake amongst that particular cohort. We’re not expecting it to delay the [reopening] process significantly.”
Mr Cook said he expected to see a reduction in the take-up of AstraZeneca but dealing with any excess supply was a matter for the Commonwealth.