THIS week, with the Delta strain of coronavirus wreaking havoc across the country and threatening SA, I decided it was time to get my COVID-19 vaccination.
I'm not sure why it had taken me so long to do. I get my yearly flu vaccination, donate blood and I'm not afraid of needles.
Maybe living in a regional area means my life has not been affected by COVID-19 as much as others, and I haven't considered it a priority - but I don't like to make excuses.
I got on the SA Health website (sahealth.sa.gov.au) and it was quite an easy process to book an appointment - a few simple questions and then selecting a nearby clinic and time.
I live just outside the Adelaide Hills boundary and Mount Barker Hospital is my nearest clinic.
The next available appointment? October... which I thought was a little excessive.
So I decided to try another clinic a little further away and it was the same wait, while at other clinics that have appointments sooner, the medical practice doesn't accept online bookings for new patients.
In my mind, I thought it would maybe be a week wait, even two.
But three months-plus is a little puzzling with the state government just this week insisting "there has never been a more important time to roll up and get vaccinated".
It sounds like you can just rock up to a clinic and get the jab. No so.
My colleague, who lives in the Barossa Valley, faced the same issue last week, but was a little more proactive.
She called her local hospital, who provided her with a vaccine hotline number (0468 576 150).
The hotline operator informed her the earliest appointment available in her region was also October, but if she was willing to travel she could get an earlier weekday appointment in Victor Harbor (165km away) in early July, which she reluctantly accepted.
While it was great to see the state government this week start a "pop-up kiosk" program to encourage and assist more people to book vaccinations online, I don't think the booking process is the hold up.
Why aren't there more pop-up clinics to administer the actual jab? With the next phase of a regional COVID-19 pharmacy vaccination program being touted, let's hope that helps speed up the process.
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