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‘V for vaccine’: WWII survivor makes history as she receives first COVID-19 vaccine

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

An 84-year-old World War two survivor has made history becoming the first person in Australia to receive a COVID vaccination.

Jane Malysiak made history today when she became the first person in Australia to receive the long-awaited COVID-19 vaccine.

The 84-year-old received the Pfizer jab today at Sydney's Castle Hill Medical Centre.

Ms Malysiak commemorated the historic occasion by signalling the usual 'V for victory' - in this case, 'V for vaccine' - alongside the Prime Minister, before turning it around, igniting roars of laughter from the watching press.

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Prime Minister Scott Morrison was full of praise for the aged care resident.

"Jane Malysiak has seen many historic days in Australia over the course of her more than 80 years of life," he said.

"She grew up in Poland in the Depression ... she went through the Second World War, she came to Australia, she built a wonderful life here and is still living it gloriously today," he said.

The PM said he was grateful to her for getting vaccinated.

"It's great to be here with Jane today ... Jane is a great Australian.

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"She came here from Europe when she was 13 and she's built an amazing life in this country.

"She's seen more things than most of us have, and she's taking part in what is a very historic day for our country, and I want to thank you, Jane, for being with us here today."

Shortly after, the PM himself got the jab, followed by Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly and Australia's Chief Nurse Alison McMillan.

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Mr Morrison said from tomorrow thousands of people across the country from priority groups would receive the vaccine, and said Australia remained the envy of the world in its handling of the pandemic.

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"We were going to make our Australian way through this pandemic, and the Australian way has proved to be, when you look around the world, one of the most effective there is.

The first Pfizer doses had been officially scheduled to be begin tomorrow but Health Minister Greg Hunt told the ABC's Insiders program this has been brought forward by a day.

Phase 1A of the vaccination is set to begin in full tomorrow, with up to 1.4 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine to be given to hotel quarantine workers, frontline healthcare workers and aged care staff and residents in the coming weeks.

Source: 9News

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