City of Whittlesea chief executive Craig Lloyd pictured last year receiving his COVID-19 vaccine.

A MASS vaccination hub has returned to the Plenty Ranges Arts and Convention Centre, PRACC, in South Morang to support the effort to deliver thousands of third doses in coming weeks.

Northern Health will again partner with the City of Whittlesea to run the clinic in the Eucalyptus Room at the centre, as well as a specialised children’s vaccination clinic at the Civic Centre in South Morang.

Children aged five to 12 are now eligible for COVID-19 vaccinations.

City of Whittlesea chief executive Craig Lloyd said council was pleased to be able to support the continued vaccination roll out.

“We know with the new Omicron variant, third doses are very important in helping to protect our community so it’s important that we make accessing vaccination as easy as possible,” he said.

Changes to clinical guidelines around vaccination mean that unlike last time, the theatre at PRACC can also operate in conjunction with the clinic.

“When the mass vaccination hub was open from June to December more than 240,000 doses were administered which played an important part in helping our community to stay safe,” Mr Lloyd said.

“We hope our community will make the most of this opportunity to get their third dose close to home and of course if they haven’t been vaccinated yet, to join the more than 90 per cent of City of Whittlesea residents who are double vaxxed.”

The children’s vaccination clinic will be a dedicated child-friendly space with entertainment and activities to make the process less stressful for children.

“Getting children vaccinated before they return to school is an important part of protecting our whole community, along with other measures like masks, distancing and good ventilation,” Mr Lloyd said.

The push for children to be vaccinated and others to receive their third doses, or boosters, comes as a huge surge in cases across Australia.