Beyond Blue Chair Julia Gillard AC has thanked millions of Australians for rolling up their sleeves and getting vaccinated.
“It is heartening to see so many Australians getting vaccinated against COVID-19. By doing so, they’re protecting themselves and those around them, especially those who are most vulnerable to the virus and those at the frontline,” she said.
“Vaccination will support our collective mental health and wellbeing by reuniting us with friends and family, allowing business to reopen and reducing some of the uncertainty surrounding this pandemic.”
Ms Gillard said she understood that some people were anxious and worried about vaccination.
“Beyond Blue understands these are uncertain times, misinformation does circulate, and some people may be unsure. Our message is that a conversation with your GP or healthcare professional can help manage anxiety or fears by supporting you through the process with factual, trusted information,” she said.
Beyond Blue CEO Georgie Harman said: “The pandemic is profoundly affecting people’s mental health and it’s vital for our wellbeing that we find ways to live safely with COVID. Vaccination is key to this. Every vaccination helps protect our healthcare system and supports our healthcare workers.”
“Counsellors at the Coronavirus Mental Wellbeing Support Service are ready to support you through any feelings of anxiety you may be experiencing,” she said.
Beyond Blue clinical lead and GP, Dr Grant Blashki, encouraged people to stick to reliable information about vaccination.
“It’s great that so many people are taking the opportunity to get vaccinated, and we want to reassure people that your GP can support you through the process,” Dr Blashki said.
“Vaccination is very safe, highly effective and much less risky than catching COVID-19 whilst unvaccinated. The best way to manage any concerns you may have is to get the facts from a reliable source.”
Beyond Blue recommends the following for information on COVID-19 vaccination:
“It’s such a good feeling once you’re double vaccinated to know you’ve minimised your risk of serious COVID illness and are also helping the community,” Dr Blashki said.
“It may also help to remember that Australian public health authorities are carefully monitoring how millions of people around the world are responding to COVID 19 vaccines, and it’s clear they dramatically reduce the risk of serious disease and hospitalisation.”
Feelings of anxiety are normal and understandable in these times of uncertainty. However, if your worries are persistent, intense or interfering with your daily life, we encourage you to speak with Beyond Blue, your GP or a mental health professional.
Beyond Blue Support Service - 1300 22 4636 or beyondblue.org.au/get-support
Coronavirus Mental Wellbeing Support Service - 1800 512 348 or coronavirus.beyondblue.org.au