Australians aged over 18 will be eligible for a third COVID-19 jab from November 8 after the Therapeutic Goods Administration provisionally approved the use of the Pfizer vaccine as a universal booster.

The provisional approval, announced by Health Minister Greg Hunt on Wednesday, is subject to final advice provided by the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation.

The general population booster program will see the Commonwealth government utilise existing supplies and distribution mechanisms to roll out the vaccine, with the priority being aged care residents and Australians with disabilities.

“This is an important step and it will mean that Australia will be one of the most highly vaccinated societies in the world, one of the most recently vaccinated communities in the world and one of the first to receive a whole of population booster program,” said Minister Hunt.

“This is about additional protection and that you remain fully vaccinated with two vaccines.

“We have the supplies, we have the distribution mechanisms, we’ll just work with the states, the GPs, the pharmacies, the Commonwealth vaccination clinics and the Indigenous vaccination clinics to ensure that everything’s in place and we will commence aged care and disability as a priority.”

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