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AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT NEWS/Media Release COVID 19 NEWS COVID-19 Updates Department of Health

COVID-19 vaccinations for Expat Australians located overseas

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 COVID-19 vaccinations for Expat Australians located overseas

A row of COVID-19 vaccination vials

The Australian Government announced in February that Australia’s COVID-19 vaccinations will be rolled out domestically to people in Australia. It doesn’t include Australians overseas.

Up to date information about Australia’s national roll-out of the COVID-19 Vaccination Program is available at the Department of Health’s website.

Under the Australian COVID-19 Vaccination Program, the Australian Government considers officials about to be deployed or currently deployed overseas on official government business as Critical and High Risk Workers under Phase 1b and has started to offer vaccines to eligible personnel.

COVID-19 vaccines are approved for use in Australia by the Therapeutic Goods Administration’s (TGA) rigorous assessment and approval processes. This includes assessment of its safety, quality and effectiveness. Information on vaccines approved for use in Australia can be found on the TGA website.

COVID-19 vaccinations overseas

The Australian Government can’t provide advice on the safety, quality and efficacy of vaccines that have been approved for use outside of Australia’s regulatory process. You should consult your local health professional for advice on vaccine options, including assistance that may be available locally.

Australia’s global network is working with foreign governments to allow Australians in country to access vaccines through their local vaccination programs, should you wish to do so. This is consistent with the approach in Australia that vaccines are available to all people living in Australia.

If available, a link to information on your location’s vaccination program is in our travel advice. Refer to the ‘Health Risks’ heading in the ‘Health’ section.

If you choose to get vaccinated locally, make sure to only go through the official vaccination program for the destination you’re in. Ignore offers of vaccines from unverified sources. Scammers are selling products claiming to prevent or treat COVID-19 without proof of what they contain or whether they work.

Registering a vaccination received overseas

If you receive a COVID-19 Pfizer or AstraZeneca vaccine while overseas, you can register your vaccination on the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) when you return to Australia. At this time, if you’ve received a COVID-19 vaccine overseas which is not Pfizer or AstraZeneca, you cannot have it added to the AIR.

To register your vaccination in the AIR:

  • obtain proof of vaccination from your provider when you receive the vaccine
  • bring the proof of vaccination to Australia when you return. The proof must be translated to English if it’s in another language.
  • make sure your Medicare online account is up to date.
  • give the proof of vaccination along with your Medicare card to a recognised vaccination provider in Australia. They’ll verify your vaccination status and add the record of vaccination to the AIR.

For more information on registering an overseas COVID-19 vaccination, visit Services Australia.

COVID-19 vaccinations for essential travel from Australia

Australian citizens and permanent residents who have an approved outwards travel exemption in an eligible category are now able to access COVID-19 vaccinations in Australia. Information on eligible categories and further details can be found on the Department of Home Affairs website.

COVID-19 vaccines before your travel are not mandatory. You should follow expert health advice and access a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as practicable.

For more information on how to make your vaccination appointment please visit the Department of Health’s vaccine eligibility checker.

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