Health Minister Greg Hunt said the announcement is an “important step” which will allow Australia to become “one of the most highly vaccinated societies in the world”.
The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has provisionally approved a booster shot of the Pfizer vaccine for Australians aged 18 years and over.
The TGA on Wednesday said the third dose would only be given at least six months after completing a “COVID-19 vaccine primary series”.
Australians who received two jabs of AstraZeneca or Moderna will still be eligible for the Pfizer booster.
Health Minister Greg Hunt declared the announcement is an “important step” as Australia continues to move forward from the coronavirus pandemic.
“It will mean that Australia will be one of the most highly vaccinated societies in the world,” Mr Hunt said during a press conference on Wednesday morning.
“One of the most recently vaccinated communities in the world. And one of the first to receive a whole population booster program.”
Mr Hunt said the Australian Technical Advisory Group (ATAGI) on Immunisation will provide final advice on the booster jab.
Subject to ATAGI advice, he expects the booster program will begin no later than November 8.
“We have the supplies, we have a distribution mechanism, we will work with the states, the GPs, the pharmacies, the Commonwealth vaccination clinics, the indigenous vaccination clinics to ensure that everybody is in place,” he said.
The booster jabs will be rolled out to aged care and disability as a priority, Mr Hunt said.
“And then finally, as I say, it’s a universal booster and so it is available for a Pfizer, AstraZeneca or Moderna,” Mr Hunt said.
“As people come to the six-month plus timeframe since a second dose, Pfizer will be available.”