The Guild has welcomed comments by the Prime Minister that NRL players who don’t get a flu jab shouldn’t play
Gold Coast NRL player Bryce Cartwright has stated that he refused to be vaccinated against influenza, as the League readies itself for the beginning of the 2020 season later this month.
Mr Cartwright’s partner, Shanelle, has said on social media that the pair are “not anti anything” and “stand for medical freedom and the right to choose”.
She claims that the couple’s children are a “picture of health” and says that they have “never had a round of antibiotics are (sic) any other pharmaceutical drug for that matter (yes, including Panadol).
Mr Cartwright has been permitted to return to training after refusing the flu vaccination, while other clubs with vaccine-refusing players, such as the Canberra Raiders’ Sia Soliola, Josh Papalii and Joseph Tapine, are set to see these players return to training shortly.
In response to Mr Cartwright’s stance, Prime Minister Scott Morrison told 2GB’s Ray Hadley that, “When I was social services minister I started the ‘no jab, no play’ rule into the childcare facilities”.
“And I think the same rule applies there — no jab, no play,” he said.
The Pharmacy Guild of Australia, Queensland Branch, welcomed the PM’s recommendation that NRL players should get their flu vaccination before commencing the season.
The move will set a strong example for the community and help slow the spread of influenza at a time when COVID-19 is also impacting Australians, the Guild said.
State Branch President Trent Twomey welcomed the news and said that the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has highlighted how important it is for all Australians to be vaccinated against the flu this year.
“Many NRL players are role models to much of the Queensland community. It will be fantastic for the community to see champions setting an example and showing how easily one jab can prevent the spread of influenza,” he said.
“With the average community pharmacy only 2.5km away from most of the population, there’s no better place for Queenslanders to be vaccinated.
“We look forward to seeing the Broncos, Cowboys and Titans players getting their flu vaccination in their local community pharmacy soon.
“The community is taking flu vaccinations very seriously this year, and many pharmacies have reported doing as many vaccinations in the past four weeks as they did in three or four months last year.
“Community pharmacies stand ready to vaccinate Queenslanders and demand continues to grow.”
He noted that businesses are also seeing the importance of vaccinating staff against influenza.
“The Guild’s Queensland Corporate Vaccination Program has seen a huge surge in demand with more bookings being made in one month than over the entire 2019 flu season’s (four months).
“At a time when many are working from home, the program supports staff to easily book a flu vaccination at their local community pharmacy at their convenience.”