Premier Gladys Berejiklian and the NSW government were reportedly blindsided by federal Health Minister Greg Hunt’s decision to call in the Australian Defence Force to help vaccinate aged care residents, it has been revealed.
Mr Hunt enlisted the ADF to help with the government’s rollout of the vaccine in aged care, with the immunisation plan already behind schedule.
The rollout so far has been plagued by missteps, including an incident where two aged care residents accidentally received four times the recommended dose of the vaccine.
At present, there are an estimated 200,000 elderly Australians in aged care facilities but only 500 nurses trained to administer the vaccine.
That is why army doctors and nurses are being trained on how to immunise aged care residents and workers in rural areas against COVID-19.
Mr Fordham revealed on 2GB that no minister from the state government had heard about Mr Hunt’s plan until watching 9 News on Tuesday night.
“The first they heard about it was when Chris O’Keefe broke the story on Nine News. That was late yesterday,” he said on radio.
“NSW was kept in the dark, and it looks like Greg Hunt has hit the panic button.
“Can you imagine how embarrassing it is for Gladys Berejiklian and Brad Hazzard to learn about this through Nine News?
“When you’re running the state of NSW, you would think that you were owed better than that.”
Ms Berejiklian’s office has been contacted for comment.