The people in line to receive the COVID jab from Monday

Archie Jacobs, who has cystic fibrosis, says getting the vaccine will help him feel safer when he’s seeing friends and family.

Even before the coronavirus pandemic the 28-year-old’s condition made him extra wary of hygiene. The risks if infected make him eligible for a vaccination in phase 1b from Monday.

Archie Jacobs, who suffers from cystic fibrosis, will receive the AstraZenica jab as part of phase 1b.Credit:Justin McManus

Mr Jacobs and his partner isolated in an apartment in Melbourne’s CBD weeks before health restrictions last year and staying away from crowds was one reason he stopped working as a substitute teacher.

“We have dialled that spider sense up to 11,” Mr Jacobs said of his precautions. “It put a lot of strain on not just our relationship but our finances as well.”

Monash Medical Centre will organise Mr Jacobs’s vaccination and time his jab separately from other cystic fibrosis patients to keep infection risks low.

“I am looking forward to getting it done,” he said. “But I don’t know if it will make me immediately relax. You just don’t know who is going to have the jab or not.”

Peter Guthrie, 70, wants to visit his property in Thailand and is on a vaccine waiting list with his GP.Credit:Jason South

Peter Guthrie, 70, is among older Australians eligible for an AstraZeneca jab, which he hopes will hasten a return to his holiday home in Koh Chang, an island off mainland Thailand.

“I normally go there for four or five months every Melbourne winter,” Mr Guthrie said. “I didn’t do that last winter and I’m not sure when I will get there.”

He was frustrated that a national list of GPs giving vaccinations was difficult for him to find online on Wednesday, and instead called his GP directly.

“It took me 30 minutes before I found it,” he said of the list. “I thought ‘this is too hard’.”

Mr Guthrie now expects to be on a waiting list at Ripponlea Medical Centre for at least three weeks before he secures an appointment.

“It’s not only a medical benefit but there’s a travel benefit as well,” he said.

Gitika Sanghvi, owner of Alcaston Dental Care in Melbourne’s CBD, said she was grateful to be in a priority vaccination group and to join frontline health workers, who were vaccinated earlier during phase 1a.

Melbourne dentist Gitika SanghviCredit:Jason South

“Essentially we are health workers as well; we have a lot more bodily fluids in the air when we are working,” Ms Sanghvi said.

“I am really excited to get it.“

She said dentists felt safe doing their job once COVID-19 cases fell. Now she feels more at risk on public transport or in supermarkets than while wearing PPE at work.

“I will be more relieved to walk around in the community when I get a vaccination,” she said.

Ms Sanghvi hopes the vaccination rollout will stop another lockdown occurring.

“We have a huge backlog, as have a lot of other practices. Ideally, we just get to continue to go as normal and catch up,” she said.

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