Graphic: NG Lands
The RFDS’ remote COVID-19 vaccination program continues to roll-out to the furthest corners of Western Australia this week with crews undertaking a five-day clinic in the Ngaanyatjarra Lands (NG Lands).
The NG Lands are made up of 12 communities and is located in the far east of Western Australia’s Goldfields region, adjoining the Northern Territory and South Australia borders.
Working in partnership with NG Health, this week the RFDS’ COVID-19 Vaccination team will visit the remote WA communities of Warburton, Wanarn, Jameson, Blackstone, Wingellina, Kiwikurra and Warakurna to deliver the first round of vaccines from July 12-16.
RFDS Primary Health Care nurse Kate Jones who is leading the efforts on the ground said the first two days of the clinic has been highly successful.
“The response from staff and community members has been overwhelming and we, like them, are so grateful that we have been able to vaccinate so many people over the past two days,” she said.
“The uptake has been far bigger than we expected and our nurses Amy and Kathy have been incredible in taking it in their stride.
"Our pilot Ben is not only getting us safely to where we need to be but is also keeping us fed, hydrated and caffeinated when we don’t have time to take a break.
“The NG Lands staff warmly welcomed us and are working hard behind-the-scenes to help us get the job done.
"This clinic really highlights the importance of partnerships in healthcare.”
Kate, who typically provides primary health care to the Kimberley region, said the NG Lands clinic is an experience she’s unlikely to ever forget, with many precious memories made with the community who gave her and the crew a warm welcome.
“We had people who were scared at first come back after their vaccine and bring their friends and families to see the nurses from the Kimberley who were here to help. It was incredible and to say I am proud is an understatement,” she said.
“Little Chloe also wanted her vaccine today but had to settle with supporting her mum Vanessa because is too young. She wanted to give me a cuddle and share my orange and I was happy to oblige.”
When visiting and working in many varied Aboriginal communities, our clinicians seek the advice and permission of Elders and we are proud to continually develop trust and strong relationships with our patients.
Written by Ivy James, RFDS WA Senior Media and Communications Coordinator. For media enquiries contact 0438 941 058.