They Did It! TLC Aged Care Completes Their Covid-19 Vaccination Program

on the Monday, May 3, 2021

TLC Aged Care is the first residential aged care provider of its size to complete the vaccination of their 1,500 residents, and 2,000 staff and contractors against COVID-19.

TLC is the only aged care provider in Australia that has been approved by the Department of Health to directly administer the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine to their residents, staff and contractors, as part of the Phase 1A roll-out of the national vaccination program.

Utilising their TLC Primary Care team of immunisation nurses and general practitioners, TLC has administered over 7,700 Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination doses.

TLC will be administering their final 587 vaccination doses at Marina, their aged care home in the Melbourne suburb of Altona North, on May 3 and 4; completing their 5 week program on time with no vaccine wastage.

TLC anticipated delays in the Government vaccination roll-out across residential aged care as early as February 2021.

TLC acted quickly, providing the Department of Health with a formal proposal to administer Phase 1A of the program itself.

TLC Healthcare’s CEO, Lou Pascuzzi, explained “TLC has community medical centres located at our residential aged care homes; so we have the facilities, experience and expertise to deliver vaccination programs.

“We approached the Department of Health back in February 2021, and offered to administer the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine to our residents, staff and contractors ourselves. The Department were very receptive to the idea, and TLC was able to meet their rigorous clinical and reporting criteria.

“Not only has this resulted in a faster roll-out of the vaccine to our residents, staff and contractors; but it has also freed up the Department of Health’s immunisation teams to visit other aged care homes who are not in a similar position.

“I didn’t want my staff and residents to endure another winter of nervousness and trepidation regarding this virus. We’ve done an outstanding job keeping our 1,500 residents and 2,000 staff and contractors across our 11 large aged care homes free from the virus over the last 17 months, and I wanted the risk of any outbreaks minimised over the coming winter months.

“I am very proud of my team, particularly our immunisation nurses and doctors, who have done a magnificent job of delivering such a large number of vaccinations, in such a short time. I am also proud that we were able to reach out to almost 500 high-acuity members of the local communities around our aged care homes with surplus doses. Our immunisation team’s expertise enabled them to draw 6 doses from each vial, rather than 5; so we could offer these additional doses to our medical centre patients. Some of the life stories of high-acuity people we’ve been able to help in the community, desperate for the Pfizer vaccine, were humbling.” says Pascuzzi.

Pascuzzi also said he was proud of the 91.25% uptake of the vaccine by his 3,500 residents, staff and contractors. “This gives us great confidence that we have minimised the risk of a COVID-19 outbreak at TLC sites, positioning them as some of the safest residential aged care homes in Australia as we approach the winter months” he said.

Pascuzzi went on to say that from May 5 through to May 26, TLC will roll-out its influenza vaccination program to its residents, staff and contractors; which will further protect TLC sites.

“With the focus on COVID-19, the industry has forgotten about one of the biggest killers in aged care. We have protected TLC residents from influenza outbreaks for the last 5 years, primarily as a result of our vaccination program” he said.

TLC Primary Care’s medical centres have also been approved to vaccinate people who qualify for Phase 1B and 2A of the COVID-19 vaccination program, using the AstraZeneca vaccine.

TLC operates 11 residential aged care homes, 10 medical centres, and a registered training organisation located across Melbourne and Geelong.

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