Over the last four weeks there were 36,118 casesof COVID in the region, a reduction of 4,596 cases over the last week. Please note that the actual number of cases is likely to be much more. For further information please go to the latest NSW COVID statistics. We would like to highlight that the number of influenza cases continues to increase significantly over the last week particularly amongst children.
Infection control and wearing masks (staff and patients) remains important. Practices are also asked to ensure that their most vulnerable populations are fully vaccinated and where possible to ensure children with respiratory illnesses get access to care. If you would like an infectious control consultation or any other support, please email
Currently influenza is mainly impacting children but is expected to spread to older adults in the coming weeks, with several aged care facilities in our area already experiencing influenza outbreaks.
As of June 12, only 54% of residents in our region aged 65 years and over had a 2022 influenza vaccine. Fewer than 27% of children under 5 years of age had at least one 2022 influenza vaccine dose reported
The 2022 influenza vaccine is a good match to circulating strains and GPs/pharmacists/aged care facilities are urged to take every opportunity to maximise flu vaccine uptake particularly in the very young and those 65 years and over.
Please help our Emergency Departments
A growing number of patients with respiratory illnesses are presenting to EDs in our region. We are encouraging patients with respiratory symptoms to be seen by a GP when required, especially the elderly and children.
To try and reduce unnecessary burden on our EDs, GPs should facilitate either telehealth or in person consultation for patients with respiratory symptoms. When in person consultation is indicated, the patient should be given a surgical mask and hand sanitiser and practice staff should wear eye protection and a mask.
Minimum recommended testing for RAT negative symptomatic patients is COVID-19/influenza A/respiratory syncytial virus. Please consider early antiviral treatment for high risk patients with confirmed influenza or COVID-19.
We are also offering specialised one-on-one consultation with an experienced primary care infection control educator. This consult via Zoom will enable your practice to ensure the highest level of infection control procedures can be implemented to provide protection from circulating viral infections such as COVID-19 and Influenza.
Ensuring the health and wellbeing of your practice and staff, as well as seeking that patients’ are seen when required to reduce unnecessary ED presentations is of utmost importance during this difficult time.
To book a session email your interest to email@example.com with the subject line: “Yes I would like infection control advice”.
COVID home visiting service
Central and Eastern Sydney PHN has recently launched a COVID home visiting service. The COVID@Home Service provides an in-home assessment service delivered by a Registered Nurse with the support of a GP. We are encouraging GPs to refer to this service.
This service is aimed at COVID positive patients whose regular GP is not able to undertake home visits but where such a visit is required for medical and other support reasons while the patient is isolating. Referrals will only be accepted from GPs. Click here to find out more about the service and how to refer. If you have any enquiries please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Boosters for at-risk 12-15 year olds
From 14 June 2022, adolescents aged 12 to 15 who are at most at risk of severe disease are recommended to receive a Comirnaty (Pfizer) COVID-19 booster vaccination. Currently, Spikevax (Moderna) and Nuvaxovid (Novavax) are not licensed for use as a first booster dose in this age group.
ATAGI is not recommending a booster dose for all adolescents aged 12-15 years at this stage. Evidence shows otherwise healthy adolescents who have received two primary doses of a COVID-19 vaccine remain well protected against severe disease. To be eligible for a booster dose, the children must have completed a primary course of vaccination 3 or more months ago, and meet one or more of these criteria:
be severely immunocompromised
have a disability with significant or complex health needs
have complex and/or multiple health conditions that increase risk of severe COVID-19.
ATAGI continues to recommend a 3-month interval between a recent confirmed SARS CoV-2 infection and a scheduled dose of COVID-19 vaccine.
CESPHN Vax at Home service
The CESPHN Vax at Home Service is for those people who are housebound and not able to leave their house to receive a COVID-19 vaccination or booster. The service will accept referrals for people 16 years and over. Referrals will be accepted from GPs and from Local Health Districts. Patient self-referrals will not be accepted. All referrals must be sent through this Vax at Home Service Online Form. Please indicate if an influenza vaccine is also required. For further information on the program, please contact us.
New ordering process for PPE
Access to PPE is now via Living with COVID PPE Bundles ordered nationally through PHNs using an online order form and delivered directly by a national distributor (rather than via PHNs). Access to PPE from the National Medical Stockpile is dependent on eligibility, and PPE volumes will be monitored by the Commonwealth Department of Health.
General Practice, ACCHS and GPRCs ordering information
Living with COVID PPE Bundles are available for:
GP, ACCHS and GPRCs willing to manage COVID positive patients face-to-face, until 30 September 2022.
ACCHSs and rural and remote GPs willing to treat COVID positive patients virtually and respiratory patients face-to-face, where workforce capacity is limited AND the GP is serving the community for most of all health needs, until 30 September 2022.
GPs and GPRCs willing to support COVID positive people virtually, and respiratory patients face to face, until 30 September 2022.
Orders can only be placed once per month and be submitted to the PHN via the online form.
Please read the guidance document before placing your first order:
Individual patients we have access to a small supply of oximeters. GPs with patients they believe require a pulse oximeter urgently are asked to complete this CESPHN Pulse Oximeter online form with the patients details and we will arrange delivery of an oximeter.
General practices– practices actively seeing moderate risk COVID positive patients can also be sent up to 10 pulse oximeters per practice via the new PPE online ordering form. If your practice has already received 10 pulse oximeters via the previous process, you will need to access future stock through your local suppliers.
Maroubra Medicare Urgent Care Clinic (UCC) is now open The Maroubra Medicare Urgent Care Clinic (UCC) is now open, seven days a week, from 8.00am to 8.00pm. It was officially launched by member for Kingsford Smith, the hon Matt Thistlethwaite MP (pictured at the launch with CESPHN CEO Nathalie Hansen…
Media Release: Central and Eastern Sydney PHN releases Healthy Ageing Strategy to empower older people In response to the increasing longevity and rapid growth of the older population the Central and Eastern Sydney Primary Health Network (CESPHN) is proud to release its new Healthy Ageing Strategy 2023-2028. This comprehensive strategy…
Immunisation Weekly Update: Are your vaccines ready for summer? In the summer season, storms are more likely to occur, which can lead to power outages. Refer to the Cold Chain Toolkit to ensure all vaccination storage requirements are in place should an outage occur. Disposal of Zostavax® Zostavax® vaccine will…
Immunisation Weekly Update: COVID-19 XBB.1.5 vaccine onboarding The Australian Government has accepted the latest advice from ATAGI on the use of the new COVID-19 XBB 1.5 vaccine as part of the National COVID-19 Vaccine Program. All sites currently participating in the COVID-19 Vaccination Program will be onboarded for the three…
Immunisation Weekly Update: Increase in COVID-19 infection cases ATAGI notes a recent increase in COVID-19 cases since November 2023 across Australia and encourages all eligible people who have not yet had their recommended 2023 COVID-19 vaccine dose/s to receive them as soon as possible. A first 2023 dose is recommended…
Immunisation Weekly Update: Vaccination coverage in RACF Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) data suggests that only 36% of people aged 70+ living in the central and eastern Sydney PHN region are immunised against Pneumococcal diseases. Immunisation providers are reminded to check AIR immunisation history statements of patients going into Residential Aged…
Immunisation Weekly Update: Introduction of Shingrix® to the NIP From 1 November 2023, the shingles vaccine Shingrix® will replace Zostavax® on the National Immunisation Program (NIP) schedule for the prevention of shingles and post-herpetic neuralgia. It will be available for eligible people most at risk of complications from shingles. A…
NSW urged to prepare for heat wave Severe heatwave conditions are forecast in NSW in the coming days. Please read the NSW Health media release about taking steps to prevent heat-related illness. For further information about staying safe in a heatwave, visit Beat the heat and stay well during hot…