14 September 2022                                                                                   View this email in your browser

This Primary Care Update expands on the previous COVAX updates to include a broader range of information to support current challenges faced by primary care providers. If you have items to share across the network, please send them to

Please forward this update to any colleagues who may be interested and view previous editions here and note there will be no Primary Care Update next week due to the short week, but any updates will be included in eNews on Wednesday - subscribe here.

COVID vaccination provider bulletin 13 Sept

Moderna bivalent Original/Omicron vaccine
ATAGI have recommended that the Moderna bivalent vaccine can be used as an alternative vaccine for any booster dose in people aged 18 years or older, according to the current recommendations for booster doses. No other changes have been made to booster recommendations.

The Australian Government will include Moderna bivalent in the COVID-19 Vaccination Program from 10 October.

Co-administration of Moderna bivalent vaccine with other non-COVID vaccines is acceptable, as per current ATAGI clinical guidance. It is NOT recommended as a primary course of vaccination or as a booster for people under 18 years.

Provider information

  • All sites currently participating in the COVID-19 Vaccine Program will be onboarded for Moderna bivalent in tranches. Murray PHN will advise you of your tranche as soon as we have that information. 
  • All sites will receive an ongoing allocation of 100 doses. 
  • If an order is not placed within eight weeks, the site will be deactivated for Moderna bivalent
  • CVAS will list the vaccine as ‘Moderna bivalent 18+ blue/green’

Cold Chain Breach (CCB) process
If your vaccines have been involved in a CCB, these are the steps to follow:

  1. Place affected vaccines in quarantine within the appropriate cold chain storage requirements
  2. Mark stock as ‘Do not use. Do not discard.’
  3. Report potential CCB to the VOC on 1800 318 208*
  4. Wait for the outcome of assessment and advice on whether the vaccines are safe to use.
Further detail is provided in the bulletin.

*Outside of VOC operating hours, email the required information to for assessment during business hours. 

Shelf-life extensions
The TGA have approved shelf-life (manufacturer expiry) extensions for the vaccines listed below, provided that approved storage conditions have been maintained. Please be aware that the packaging associated with the listed batches has not been amended to reflect the extended expiry dates. Please update the expiry date on any vials you have on site.

Pfizer 12+
Extension for Pfizer 12 years+ (Purple) vaccine from 12 months to 15 months from the manufacture date for these batches. These vaccines can be administered until the use-by date (earliest of manufacturer expiry and thawed use-by). The new manufacture expiry date of each batch will also be shown in CVAS when completing delivery acceptance.

Extension for AstraZeneca vaccine from 6 months to 9 months from manufacture date. This applies to all future batches and those listed here.

Moderna 6 months to 5 years
The Department of Health and Aged Care may reach out to additional providers to participate in the roll-out of Moderna 6 months if there is demand. If you are receiving multiple calls and believe you would be able to vaccinate this cohort, let us know at

Cancelling orders
Sites are reminded that when cancelling a vaccine order in CVAS, the corresponding consumable order should also be cancelled.

Monkeypox (MPX)
A new Monkeypox pathway has recently been localised to the Murray PHN region and is now available.

Further resources

Japanese Encephalitis Virus (JEV)

The Victorian and NSW governments have announced expanded eligibility criteria* for free JEV vaccination to include people who are aged 50 years or above and spend at least four hours per day outdoors and who reside or usually work in the following local government areas – Albury, Campaspe, Gannawarra, Greater Shepparton, Indigo, Loddon, Mildura, Moira, Swan Hill, Wodonga and Towong (newly added).
*Please note that this may be subject to change based on surveillance information.

Providers of the vaccine in the Murray PHN region can be found here and local public health units are also providing JEV vaccines. Please call ahead to ensure stock on hand.  

The Victorian Department of Health webpages include information for health professionals and the public. A social media pack for the promotion of prevention messages to community is also available.

Support for homebound individuals
If you have a homebound patient, Murray PHN can help to engage a local primary care vaccine provider or apply to the Commonwealth for a VAPP provider to be allocated.
Click here to see eligibility criteria and complete a referral form or for further information, contact Emma Healion t: 0437 616 877 or e:

Local outreach vaccination and testing clinics
Upcoming clinics in the Murray PHN catchment:  To promote vaccination outreach clinics or events, e:

Local vaccination providers
Details of local general practices, Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations and pharmacies providing COVID-19 and influenza vaccinations are available on Murray PHN's website. If you wish to opt-out, e:

Note: Sites listed on our website are those classified as ACTIVE by the Commonwealth. Where specific vaccines are classified as DORMANT (no orders and <10 total administrations in the last 4 weeks) those vaccines have been removed.

COVID-19 antivirals
The Victorian Virtual Emergency Department (VVED) can prescribe COVID-19 antivirals to Victorians who return a positive result and can’t get a GP appointment or access a GP respiratory clinic. The VVED can assess patients, determine their eligibility for COVID-19 medications, and prescribe these medications.

Practices and pharmacies are encouraged to proactively identify at-risk patients and put plans in place to support their access to timely care, including antiviral and other early therapies if they contract COVID-19, influenza or other respiratory viruses.

For resources including a list of local dispensing pharmacies (updated 29 August), visit Murray PHN's antiviral webpage.

Supporting the disability sector

Disability providers and liaison officers have been advised to contact Murray PHN for assistance with engaging local primary care providers to offer in-reach vaccinations or to request Commonwealth in-reach. If your practice is able to assist with in-reach or homebound vaccinations, e:

Primary care vaccine providers can access support and resources from Disability Liaison Officers to enable people with disability to access COVID-19 vaccination at their site in: 

For additional vaccination information for specific groups, click here.

Mildura helpline for former Tristar patients
Former Tristar Mildura patients can call the Mildura Helpline for care advice and information on 1800 191 663 daily, between 8am and 10pm. Once a nurse has assessed symptoms, people may be eligible to receive a call back from a GP. For more information and links to local and other supports, click here.

Education and training

Upcoming events

Online learning

Recorded webinars

Communication and engagement

  • Murray PHN's 'It Starts With You' Campaign' supports health services, organisations and community groups to raise awareness of the importance of getting vaccinated against COVID-19. Click here to download the campaign materials.

New and updated resources

Further assistance

Copyright © 2022 Murray PHN, All rights reserved.

Murray PHN acknowledges its catchment crosses over many unceded First Nations Countries, following the Dhelkunya Yaluk (Healing River).
We pay our respects and give thanks to the Ancestors, Elders and Young people for their nurturing, protection and caregiving of these sacred lands and waterways, acknowledging their continuing cultural, spiritual and educational practices.
We are grateful for the sharing of Country and the renewal that Country gives us. We acknowledge and express our sorrow that this sharing has come at a personal, spiritual and cultural cost to the wellbeing of First Nations peoples. We commit to addressing the injustices of colonisation across our catchment, and to listening to the wisdom of First Nations communities who hold the knowledge to enable healing.
We extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Murray PHN (ABN 92 156 423 755) acknowledges the financial and other support from the Australian Government Department of Health.

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Murray PHN · 3-5 View Point · Bendigo, Vic 3550 · Australia