Aussie journalist and frequent The Project panelist Jan Fran has lashed the government's 'graphic' Covid ad urging young people to get vaccinated after trying — and failing — to get the jab herself.
Sydneysider Jan — born Jeanette Francis — took to Twitter to recount her personal attempts to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine following PM Scott Morrison's eleventh-hour announcement back in June.
At 36, Jan is part of the under-40s group that, per Mr. Morrison's announcement, is now eligible to get AZ via their GPs. Jan dutifully booked an appointment with her GP the following morning but, as she explained over 15 tweets, the process was confusing, frustrating and ultimately fruitless.
"What about this for a story of an under 40 trying to get vaccinated in Australia," she tweeted on Tuesday afternoon.
"So old mate Morrison says late June 28 that under-40s can seek out the AstraZeneca jab via their GP. The following morning I call my GP.
"Receptionist tells me they don’t administer the AZ vaccine at their clinic. I call the GP I was seeing prior to her - they do administer AZ but my particular GP is on maternity leave. Thumbs down."
'Sh*tshow of a week'
Jan then goes on to reference the fallout from the PM's AstraZeneca announcement that took everyone — the public, state leaders and the medical community — by surprise, as that particular vaccine had previously only been recommended for over-40s due to blood clotting risks.
It sparked direct opposition from the likes of Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk who urged her constituents not to listen to Mr. Morrison's advice, leaving many Aussies confused and lost amid conflicting information.
"Meantime a sh*tshow of a week is unfolding. Medical experts are publicly squabbling with each other over Morrison’s off-the-cuff comment. CHO’s [Chief Health Officers] are dishing out different advice to people under 40.
"[Chief Health Officer of Queensland] Jeannette Young is talking about an 18-year-old dying from clotting in the state of Queensland. Premier AP [Annastacia Palaszczuk] is suggesting that 'even the UK Government won’t allow their under-40s to get the AstraZeneca vaccine' - not true but okay."
Jan also pointed out that the conflicting advice even extended to industry bodies such as the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) and the Australian Medical Association (AMA).
"ATAGI is disappearing slowly backwards into a hedge - its advice hasn’t changed it says. The head of the AMA is like ‘da fuq, wait for Pfizer’ The deputy head of the AMA is like ‘nah ask for the AZ'. Cool cool cool.
"At this point I am rattled, confused and, dare I say, f**king angry. Sort this sh*t out, mates. Squabble in private, be clear and consistent in your messaging."
At that point, Jan decided to follow NSW Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant's advice so she booked in with a GP to get AstraZeneca, however, the experience was 'one of the worst' she'd ever had.
Jan said that the GP 'seemed miffed' that she wanted the jab and kept asking why, as an under-40, she didn't prefer the Pfizer which left her feeling 'stupid AF'.
She said that the GP was 'not only reticent' to give her the vaccine but they 'didn’t even want to talk about it' when she asked their opinion on Covid vaccines in general. Jan decided against getting AZ.
— Karen Barlow (@KJBar) July 11, 2021
'Can’t get vaccinated'
Jan went on to mention the controversial 'graphic' Covid ad released by the Australian Government last Friday depicting a young woman in hospital with the virus in severe respiratory distress.
The ad was specifically targeted to Sydney, which is currently in its third week of lockdown with daily new cases sitting around the high 80s mark, to urge young residents to get vaccinated as soon as possible.
But as Jan pointed out, in her experience, it wasn't as simple as that.
"Meanwhile, my state is recording more than 100 cases a day and I have to watch an ad that shows someone clearly under 40 in hospital struggling to breathe as a result of Covid 19 - a virus I can’t get vaccinated for as much as I try.
"At the end of the ad it says “book your vaccination” - haha wot? You having a laff? Also, booking doesn’t mean sh*t. I have mates who are booked in for a jab in Sept! The virus is spreading NOW and you’re the one telling me I can end up in hospital as a result. Timing matters."
She explained that she had shared her story to 'highlight the frustration levels among <40s' in NSW and not to 'throw the GP under the bus'.
"As for me, I guess I’m gonna get the Pfizer partly so I don’t have to think about this anymore and partly because GP-shopping for a jab that medical experts are half-arsed on doesn’t fill me with the greatest of confidence TBH.
"I used to see Australia at the bottom of the list of countries that have successfully rolled out covid vaccinations and think how in the heck? How are we doing so poorly? Well, that’s how! I wonder how many others are in a similar position to me."
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