vic_logo
coronavirus.vic.gov.au
Hero banner: COVID factory food workers

Summary

In order to continue working onsite, many workers will need to provide evidence to their employer they have received two or three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine or have a valid proof of medical exemption.

A work premise is anywhere you are required to be onsite for your work, including a home-based business where customers or clients enter a part of the premise. For example, a real estate work premises would include a home inspection, not just head office.

Workers (including volunteers) aged under 12 years and two months are not required to be vaccinated.

Third dose vaccination requirements

The following workers (including contractors, volunteers, and students on placement) are required to show evidence to their employer they have received three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in order to continue working outside their home.

You are eligible to receive a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine if you received your second dose, three or more months ago (i.e. if you got your second dose on 1 October, you would be eligible for your third dose on 1 January).

Read more about receiving your third dose, which includes booster doses or the third primary dose.

Third dose vaccination requirements do not apply to workers (including volunteers) aged under 18 years or those with a medical exemption.

  • You must have already received three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or have an exemption) to be able to work onsite.

    Who is a residential aged care facility worker

    A residential aged care facility includes public, private, and not-for profit residential aged care facilities. A residential aged care worker is a person (including a volunteer) who is:

    • employed or engaged as a contractor, by a residential aged care facility to perform work at the facility including:
    • direct care workforce including nurses, personal care workers, allied health professionals, and allied health assistants
    • administration staff including reception and management staff
    • ancillary staff including food preparation, cleaning, laundry, gardening, and general maintenance staff
    • dental practitioners
    • phlebotomists (pathology nurses)
    • lifestyle and social staff, such as those delivering music or art therapy
    • transport drivers who are responsible for collecting and transporting residents to and from the residential aged care facility for outings
    • volunteers engaged by the residential aged care facility to undertake duties at the facility
    • students on placement
    • medical practitioners and allied health professions who attend the residential aged care facility to provide care to residents of the facility
    • a medical practitioner, dental practitioner or allied health professional who is employed or engaged by a resident of a residential aged care facility to provide care to the resident.

    This applies to those working at a residential aged care facility, not those that work at another worksite (such as head office) - unless they work across both premises.

    In-home and community aged care workers

    Although a third dose is not required for in-home and community aged care workers, it is strongly encouraged that all in-home and community aged care workers get a third dose as soon as they are eligible (at least 3 months after a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine).

    • In-home and community aged care workers include:
    • All Commonwealth funded aged care service providers delivering in-home and community aged care services including:
      • Home Care Packages
      • Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP)
      • National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Flexible Aged Care Program home care services
      • Short-Term Restorative Care
      • Transition Care Program
      • Multi-Purpose Services
    • All full-time, part-time and casual staff employed or engaged by the Commonwealth funded service provider, including sub-contractors and volunteers.
    • Workers and volunteers in all roles delivered by the Commonwealth funded aged care service provider, including those that provide care and services in and around clients’ homes, in the community and organisational administration.

    Workers who undertake other roles as disability or healthcare workers may be required to have their third dose. Please see ‘Healthcare workers’ and ‘Disability workers’ below for more information.

  • You must have already received three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or have an exemption) to be able to work in a healthcare setting.

    Who is a healthcare facility worker

    Healthcare workers

    A healthcare worker is a person (including a volunteer or student) who is employed or engaged as a contractor, to perform work at a health setting (including businesses operating within the health setting) including:

    • direct care and interaction roles
    • medical practitioner, dental professional, nurse and midwife
    • allied health professional (AHPRA-registered and Department of Health Classification)
    • personal care attendant
    • palliative care worker
    • coroner
    • phlebotomist and pathology worker
    • lifestyle and social therapist
    • formal language and interpretation service.
      • Note: if you are providing healthcare services in an education facility, vaccination requirements for education workers apply.
    • administrative and ancillary roles
      • administrative, clerical, and managerial worker, including assistant and delegate worker
      • food preparation, cleaning, laundry
      • patient service assistant, porter
      • operating theatre technicians
      • security, maintenance and repair, information technology, gardening and landscaping
    • ambulance and patient transport service roles
    • workers in retail businesses operating within health settings
      • such as cafés, restaurants, newsagents and florists, among others.

    Healthcare settings are:

    • hospitals including outpatient settings and in-reach services
    • ambulance and patient transport services
    • community health centres and services (including community-based mental health services, maternal and child health services, and drug and alcohol counselling services)
    • general practices
    • COVID-19 related healthcare delivery settings, including testing sites, vaccination centres, and hotel quarantine
    • dental surgeries and practices
    • day procedure centres
    • health clinics (e.g. where health appointments are delivered by medical specialists and allied health professionals)
    • pharmacies
    • diagnostic and medical imaging centres
    • mobile health services
    • blood donation services
    • educational settings where health care students undertake placement / registration and / internship
    • health services embedded in other government agencies or sectors (e.g. healthcare workers providing services in correction settings)
    • coroners court
    • businesses operating within health settings (e.g. workers at the café/restaurant/ newsagent/ florist within a hospital).
  • You must have already received three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or have an exemption) to be able to work onsite.

    Who is a disability worker

    A disability worker:

    • directly provides a disability service to a person with a disability
    • supervises or manages another person who directly provides a disability service to a person with a disability.

    A person is not a disability worker if:

    • the person is a family member of a person with a disability, and provides disability services to the person with a disability; and does not receive a fee or reward for providing those disability services
    • the person voluntarily provides disability services, unless the person provides the disability services on behalf of an organisation or agency

    What is a disability service

    A disability service is a service which involves more than incidental contact with a person with a disability and is specifically provided to the person for the principal purpose of caring for, or treating, the person or supporting the person to manage the person's limitations in undertaking one of more of the following:

    • communication, e.g. speech therapy
    • social or economic participation, e.g. assistance with shopping or budgeting
    • social interaction , e.g. participating in structure social skills groups or activities
    • learning, e.g. tutoring and training
    • mobility, e.g. training and instructions about how to use mobility equipment
    • self-care, e.g. personal hygiene
    • self-management, e.g. cooking and cleaning
    • a prescribed service.

    Organisations are responsible for assessing if workers are covered by the above criteria.

  • You must have already received three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or have an exemption) to be able to work onsite.

    Who is a custodial worker

    A custodial worker is a person who works at or in connection with a custodial facility including:

    • prisons
    • remand centres
    • youth residential centres
    • youth justice centres
    • residential facilities
    • residential treatment facilities
    • post-sentence facility.
  • You must have already received three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or have an exemption) to be able to work onsite.

    Who is an emergency services worker

    An emergency service worker is someone who works in connection with emergency services, including:

    • the Victoria State Emergency Services
    • Fire Rescue Victoria, the Country Fire Authority or any other firefighting services
    • the Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority
    • aquatic safety services, including lifesaving services and marine search and rescue services; paramedical services
    • ambulance and paramedics services
    • air ambulance and medical retrieval services (including Royal Flying Doctor Service)
    • Victoria Police, protective services and police custody services
    • essential infrastructure and essential services that are required to maintain or protect human health, safety and wellbeing (whether provided by a public or private undertaking) and including maintenance and repair of such infrastructure.
  • You must have already received three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or have an exemption) to be able to work onsite.

    Who is a meat and seafood processing worker

    A meat and seafood processing worker is someone who works at or in connection with an abattoir, meat, seafood or poultry processing plant.

  • You must have already received three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or have an exemption) to be able to work onsite.

    Who is a quarantine accommodation worker

    A quarantine accommodation worker is a person who works in connection with quarantine accommodation services that are critical and relate to the Victorian Government's COVID-19 response.

  • You must have already received three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or have an exemption) to be able to work onsite.

    Who is a food distribution worker

    Who is a food distribution worker

    A food distribution worker is someone who works at or in connection with a premises that has the primary purpose of the distribution of food and is an on site worker at that premises who is a:

    • manufacturing worker; or
    • port or freight worker; or
    • meat and seafood processing worker.

    Exception: a person who works at or in connection with premises used only for the production or processing (but not distribution) of food.

  • Workers at school, childcare and early education services including outside school hours care services

    You must have already received three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or have an exemption) to be able to work in an education setting.

    Workers for educational services including childcare or early childhood services include:

    • any staff members who are employed by an operator of an educational facility, who work in a school, childcare or early education service or outside school hours care service (i.e. teachers, early childhood educators and educational support staff)
    • contractors working on site in close proximity to children, students or staff whether engaged by a school, childcare or early childhood education service or outside school hours care service (i.e. casual relief teachers, Breakfast Club suppliers, IT personnel, NDIS providers, auditors but not delivery personnel or contractors personnel performing work outside of school hours)
    • staff of the Department of Education and Training who attend school, childcare or early childhood education service or outside school hours care service sites (such as allied health personnel, Authorised Officers)
    • staff providing healthcare services in an education facility (including allied health personnel)
    • staff of any other entity who attend school, childcare or early childhood education service or outside school hours care service sites
    • volunteers attending on site working in close proximity to children, students or staff (such as parent helpers)
    • students on placements.

    The third dose requirement does not apply to a person attending an educational facility outside of regular operating hours for non-educational purposes, such as for after-hours sporting activities or where the facility is used as an election polling site.

  • Depending upon your situation, exceptions to the third dose deadline are available for workers who have received two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine.

    If you had COVID-19 or were a contact

    If you are a worker required to be triple vaccinated but were unable to receive your third dose by a nominated deadline because you were quarantining as a household or household-like contact, you have an additional 14 days from the end of your quarantine period to receive your third dose.

    If you are a worker required to be vaccinated but were unable to receive your third dose by a nominated deadline because you were recovering from a recent COVID-19 infection, you have an additional 4 months from the end of your isolation period to receive your third dose, provided your recent infection is confirmed by a PCR test.

    • Exception: if you reported your positive rapid antigen test result to the Department of Health and ended your isolation on or before 11:59 pm 4 February 2022, you can provide a written attestation to your employer stating that you tested positive for COVID-19 and were unable to get a PCR test.

    If you are a worker who recently arrived in Australia

    Workers who are recent international arrivals have an additional 4 weeks from the date of their arrival in Australia to get the third dose if:

    • they received their second dose three months or more before arriving in Australia, and
    • they have provided evidence of a booking confirmation to receive their third dose to their employer.

    If your temporary medical exemption has expired

    Workers whose temporary medical exemption has expired will have an additional 14 days from the date of expiry to receive their third dose.

    If you are not eligible to receive the third dose

    Workers who cannot meet the third dose deadline as they are ineligible based on ATAGI’s dose interval advice, have up to 3 months and 2 weeks from the date of their second dose to receive their third dose.

Second dose vaccination requirements

The following workers (including contractors, volunteers, and students on placement) are required to show evidence to their employer of receiving two vaccination doses in order to continue working outside their home.

Third dose vaccination requirements may also apply, depending on your work. Read the above section for more information.

  • An accommodation worker includes a person who works at or in connection with:

    • a camping ground
    • a caravan park
    • a hotel
    • a hostel
    • a bed and breakfast
    • a private holiday rental facility, including Airbnbs
    • a motel
    • a serviced apartment.
  • An agricultural and forestry worker is someone who works in connection with:

    • food safety and verification, inspection or associated laboratory services and biosecurity functions
    • animal saleyards, knackeries and animal transportation services (including livestock and pets)
    • services connected with animal health, husbandry or welfare
    • farm, animal and bloodstock leasing activities, including but not limited to:
      • farming activities and other operations relating to agriculture, horticulture, viticulture, irrigation, permaculture, apiculture, grains, fibre production, dairy, flower industry, commercial fishing, aquaculture and livestock
      • intensive agricultural production including greenhouses and animal production
      • agricultural, veterinary chemicals and vaccine production, transportation and distribution (including the Pig Services Centre)
      • laboratory and diagnostic services
      • animal feed production, transportation, packaging, sale, and feeding (including livestock and pets)
      • animal pounds and shelters activities
    • forestry activities for the purposes of or relating to:
      • production of firewood for heating of premises
      • production of pallets
      • production of building supplies for construction
      • production of other goods (e.g. paper, packaging, caskets and coffins).
  • Applies to people working at or in connection with an airport.

  • Note: Quarantine accommodation workers will be required to have 3 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or be medically exempt) in order to continue working on site. Read Third Dose Requirements above for more information.

    An ancillary, support and welfare worker is someone who:

    • works in connection with services that are critical to and relate to the Victorian Government's COVID-19 response (including hotel quarantine)
    • works in connection with a major event (where that event has received an exemption from the Chief Health Officer allowing it to proceed), including any workers and public broadcast personnel that support the safe running of the major event
    • works in connection with employment services
    • works in connection with a union/peak body/employer organisation official attending a worksite as permitted by law, or for Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) advice
    • is a fly in fly out worker (or drive in drive out worker) who is required for continuity of an industry or business and maintenance of a competitive operation and where the service is time-critical, or for the critical maintenance or repair of critical infrastructure
    • is part of a maritime crew.
  • Applies to someone working as an Authorised Officer.

  • Note: disability workers will be required to have 3 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or be medically exempt) in order to continue working on site. Read Third Dose Requirements above for more information.

    A care worker is someone who works in connection with:

    • an alcohol and drug residential service
    • a disability residential service
    • services provided to an NDIS participant in any setting
    • a homelessness residential service
    • a secure welfare service
    • a supported residential service
    • essential relief activities, including activities provided at Neighbourhood Houses
    • an eligible SDA enrolled dwelling
    • a short-term accommodation and assistance dwelling
    • a mental health residential service.
  • A community worker is someone who works at or in connection with a community facility or an organisation providing community services such as:

    • a community centre or community hall
    • a facility where services are provided by an Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisation
    • a public library
      • a youth centre
      • a skatepark in an outdoor space.
  • A creative arts worker means a person who works at or in connection with:

    • an art studio
    • a ceramics studio
    • a music room or studio
    • a rehearsal room or studio
    • any other facility that is used for pursuing a creative art.
  • Note: workers in this category will be required to have 3 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or be medically exempt) in order to continue working on site. Read Third Dose Requirements above for more information.

    A custodial worker means a person who works at or in connection with a custodial facility including:

    • prisons
    • remand centres
    • youth residential centres
    • youth justice centres
    • residential facilities
    • residential treatment facilities.
  • Note: Workers in this category will be required to have 3 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or be medically exempt) in order to continue working on site. Read Third Dose Requirements above for more information.

    An emergency service worker is someone who works in connection with emergency services, including:

    • the Victoria State Emergency Services
    • Fire Rescue Victoria, the Country Fire Authority or any other firefighting services
    • the Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority
    • aquatic safety services, including life saving services and marine search and rescue services; paramedical services
    • ambulance and paramedics services
    • air ambulance and medical retrieval services (including Royal Flying Doctor Service)
    • Victoria Police, protective services and police custody services
    • essential infrastructure and essential services that are required to maintain or protect human health, safety and wellbeing (whether provided by a public or private undertaking), and including maintenance and repair of such infrastructure.
  • Applies to people who work at:

    • amusement parks when providing required training for staff prior to reopening.
  • A funeral worker is a person who works in connection with funeral or mortuary services.

  • Note: Workers in this category will be required to have 3 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or be medically exempt) in order to continue working on site. Read Third Dose Requirements above for more information.

    Healthcare settings are:

    • Hospitals including outpatient settings and in-reach services
    • Ambulance and patient transport services
    • Community health centres and services (including community-based mental health services, maternal and child health services, and drug and alcohol counselling services)
    • General practices
    • COVID-19 related healthcare delivery settings, including testing sites, vaccination centres, and hotel quarantine
    • Dental surgeries and practices
    • Day procedure centres
    • Health clinics (e.g. where health appointments are delivered by medical specialists and allied health professionals)
    • Pharmacies
    • Diagnostic and medical imaging centres
    • Mobile health services
    • Blood donation services
    • Educational settings where health care students undertake placement / registration and / internship
    • Health services embedded in other government agencies or sectors (e.g. healthcare workers providing services in correction settings)
    • Coroner’s Court
    • Businesses operating within health settings (e.g. workers at the café/restaurant/ newsagent/ florist within a hospital).

    Healthcare workers

    A healthcare worker is a person (including a volunteer or student) who is employed or engaged as a contractor, to perform work at a health setting (including businesses operating within the health setting) including:

    • Direct care and interaction roles
      • Medical practitioner, dental professional, nurse and midwife
      • Allied health professional (AHPRA-registered and Department of Health Classification)
      • Personal care attendant
      • Palliative care worker
      • Coroner
      • Phlebotomist and pathology worker
      • Lifestyle and social therapist
      • Formal language and interpretation service
    • Administrative and ancillary roles
      • Administrative, clerical, and managerial worker, including assistant and delegate worker
      • Food preparation, cleaning, laundry
      • Patient service assistant, porter
      • Operating theatre technicians
      • Security, maintenance and repair, information technology, gardening and landscaping
    • Ambulance and patient transport service roles
    • Workers in businesses operating within health settings
      • Such as cafés, restaurants, newsagents and florists, among others.
  • A higher education worker is a person who works at or in connection with:

    • a university
    • a vocational education and training institute
    • technical and further education (TAFE) institutes
    • an adult community and further education institute
    • registered training organisations
    • any other post-compulsory education or training facilities.
  • A justice service centre worker is a person who works at or in connection with a justice service centre, which includes:

    • a premises or place appointed as a community corrections centre
    • Wulgunggo Ngalu Learning Place.
  • A manufacturing worker means a person who works at or in connection with a workplace that is involved in the production or distribution of manufactured goods and integrated services, including:

    • food (excluding meat, seafood or poultry - read 'Meat and seafood processing workers' below)
    • beverages including brewed and bottled drinks
    • textiles, leather, clothing, footwear and accessories
    • wood products
    • pulp and paper products
    • printing including small and large production runs
    • chemical manufacturing and processing including fertilisers, pesticides, pharmaceutical, medicinal, cleaning products, toiletries, cosmetics, photographic and explosives
    • metal and plastics manufacturing
    • machinery and equipment manufacturing including parts
    • furniture manufacturing
    • household goods production
    • whole or partial products
    • software, essential marketing, product installation.
  • Applies to any person performing work as a marriage celebrant.

  • Note: Workers in this category will be required to have 3 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or be medically exempt) in order to continue working on site. Read Third Dose Requirements above for more information.

    A meat and seafood processing worker is someone who works at or in connection with an abattoir, meat, seafood or poultry processing plant.

  • A media and film production worker is someone who works in connection with:

    • journalism
    • the production of feature films, theatre, television and documentaries (excluding television commercials, student and corporate productions)
    • a rehearsal conducted by a National Performing Arts Company
    • broadcasting performances from entertainment facilities.
  • A mining worker is someone who works where mining activities are taking place, including coal mining, oil and gas extraction, metal ore mining, non-metallic mineral mining and quarrying petroleum production.

  • A physical recreational worker is someone who:

    • works at or in connection with:
      • a facility used or partly used for sport, sport racing or physical recreation
      • a play centre
      • a trampolining centre
      • a swimming pool, hydrotherapy pool, spa, sauna, steam room or spring facility
    • who provides personal training services.
  • A port and freight worker mean a person who works in connection with:

    • air transport services (including the operation of airports)
    • port operations
    • freight services (including postal and courier services)
    • Services by a transport, freight or logistics driver
    • National Heavy Vehicle Regulator compliance activities.
  • This is someone who:

    • performs a sporting activity in an open-aged national or international competition (at the highest level as identified by the recognised national body)
    • is employed to perform a sporting activity as their primary source of income (for example, employed by a professional club or recognised national body)
    • is a National Institute Network Scholarship holder or equivalent level national categorised athlete
    • supports the safe conduct of another person's professional sport
    • publicly broadcasts professional sport
    • participates in thoroughbred, harness and greyhound racing.
  • Professional services worker means a person who provides a financial service (or works in connection with a financial service), or an Australian legal practitioner providing services outside their home, except where their work is in connection with a court, or must be done in person. This includes the Coroners Court, the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal, and The Victims of Crimes Assistance Tribunal.

  • Applies to public sector employees - excluding people employed or engaged by the CEO of Court Services Victoria or the CEO of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal.

  • A real estate worker means a person who works in connection with estate agent services.

    This includes selling, letting, negotiating, inspecting, and ancillary services such as photography and styling for real estate.

  • A religious worker is someone who works in connection with a place of worship, including a chapel, church, mosque, synagogue or temple.

    This does not include workers who:

    • conduct services of public worship and acknowledgments of faith
    • perform marriages, funerals and special memorial services according to tradition and ecclesiastical and civil law
    • visit members of the community in their homes, hospitals and other institutions to provide advice and religious comfort for the purpose of end of life faith reasons.
  • A repair and maintenance worker means a person who works in connection with:

    • laundry or dry cleaning services
    • commercial cleaning services
    • locksmith services
    • car washing services
    • vehicle and mechanical repair services
    • roadside assistance services
    • pool and spa maintenance services for commercial pools and spas
    • vehicle and mechanical repair services
    • outdoor maintenance, repairs, and cleaning, including at occupied premises
    • outdoor home installations
    • home solar panel installations that involve outdoor work or in roof cavities with external access
    • critical repairs to any premises where required for emergency or safety.
  • Note: food distribution workers (excluding retail) will be required to have 3 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or be medically exempt) in order to continue working on site. Read Third Dose Requirements above for more information.

    A retail worker is someone who works at or in connection with a retail facility, including a:

    • market, but only to obtain groceries or fresh food
    • retail shopping centre
    • supermarket, grocery store, bakery, butcher, fruit and vegetable store or fishmonger
    • food and drink facility (e.g. a cafe; a restaurant; licensed premises; a fast-food store; a cafeteria; a canteen; a winery; a food court; food trucks)
    • post office
    • news agent
    • petrol station (including a petrol station that sells groceries)
    • bottle shop
    • pet store
    • a facility providing 'click and collect' services
    • a wholesale or distribution facility.
  • A science and technology worker is someone who works in connection with scientific and technical research and activities, but only related to:

    • COVID-19 (e.g. MedTech research including vaccines)
    • hazard monitoring and resilience
    • biosecurity and public health
    • medical or other research, which cannot be shut down and requires on site attendance
    • critical scientific experiments, labs, collections.
  • Note: disability workers will be required to have 3 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or be medically exempt) in order to continue working on site. Read Third Dose Requirements above for more information.

    A Social and Community Service worker is a person who works in connection with:

    • disability services
    • services provided to an NDIS participant in any setting
    • child protection services
    • family violence and sexual assault support services
    • homelessness support services
    • public housing support services
    • mental health services
    • any social services provided or contracted by the government to support members of the community who have a particular need because of family violence, homelessness, illness or a chronic health condition, infirmity, disability, contact with the justice system or other essential support service
    • interpreter, cultural, or support services.
  • A transport worker means a person who works in connection with:

    • a bus company
    • commercial passenger vehicle service
    • public transport services.

    This includes trains, trams, taxis, rideshare services, buses (for public transport services), and other public passenger services.

  • A utility or urban worker is someone who works in connection with:

    • services to support ongoing provision and regulation of electricity, gas, water, telecommunications, sewage and waste and recycling services and their maintenance
    • domestic and commercial waste and resource recovery services (including collection, treatment and disposal services and transfer stations), including:
      • electricity services
      • operation of energy systems
      • gas services
      • water supply, sewerage and drainage services
      • liquid fuels and refinery services.
    • carparks for the purposes of supporting an Authorised Provider or Authorised Worker
    • the operation of primary clinical waste incinerators in Victoria by specialised clinical waste workers
    • specialist services at telecommunications stores to support telecommunications as a critical service during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Note: workers in this category will be required to have 3 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or be medically exempt) in order to continue working on site. Read Third Dose Requirements above for more information.

    A residential aged care facility includes public, private, and not-for profit residential aged care facilities. A residential aged care worker is a person (including a volunteer) that is:

    • employed or engaged as a contractor, by a residential aged care facility to perform work at the facility including:
      • direct care workforce including nurses, personal care workers, allied health professionals, and allied health assistants
      • administration staff including reception and management staff
      • ancillary staff including food preparation, cleaning, laundry, gardening, and general maintenance staff
      • dental practitioners
      • phlebotomists (pathology collectors)
      • lifestyle and social staff, such as those delivering music or art therapy
      • transport drivers who are responsible for collecting and transporting residents to and from the residential aged care facility for outings
      • volunteers engaged by the residential aged care facility to undertake duties at the facility
      • students on placement
      • medical practitioners and allied health professions who attend the residential aged care facility to provide care to residents of the facility.
    • a medical practitioner, dental practitioner or allied health professional who is employed or engaged by a resident of a residential aged care facility to provide care to the resident.

    This applies to those working at a residential aged care facility, not those that work at another worksite (such as head office) - unless they work across both premises.

  • A construction worker is a person who attends a construction site. Examples include:

    • all construction workers
    • subcontractors
    • union officials
    • WorkSafe, Victorian Building Authority or others who attend for the purposes of compliance and enforcement activities
    • building owners
    • delivery drivers who need to leave their vehicle and step onsite
    • visitors including volunteers.
  • Note: Workers in this category will be required to have 3 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (or be medically exempt) in order to continue working on site. Read Third Dose Requirements above for more information.

    Workers for educational services including childcare or early childhood services include:

    • any staff members who are employed by an operator of an educational facility, who work in a school, childcare or early education service or outside school hours care service (i.e. teachers, early childhood educators, educational support staff)
    • contractors working onsite in close proximity to children, students or staff whether engaged by a school, childcare or early childhood education service or outside school hours care service (i.e. casual relief teachers, Breakfast Club suppliers, IT personnel, NDIS providers, auditors - but not delivery personnel or contractors personnel performing work outside of school hours)
    • staff of the Department of Education and Training who attend school, childcare or early childhood education service or outside school hours care service sites (such as allied health personnel, Authorised Officers)
    • staff of any other entity who attend school, childcare or early childhood education service or outside school hours care service sites
    • volunteers attending on site working in close proximity to children, students or staff (such as parent helpers)
    • students on placements.
  • A veterinary and pet/animal care worker is someone who works in connection with:

    • pet grooming services
    • veterinary services
    • animal rescue services
    • animal health, welfare or husbandry services
    • or who works at or in connection with a zoo or a nature reserve where animals are cared for.
  • Workers who are not in the above categories are general workers. In most cases, this applies to people who can often work from home, such as office workers.

    General workers can return to workplace if they have had at least two doses of the vaccine, or are exempt.

    If you do not have at least 2 doses of the vaccine or don’t have an exemption, and it is reasonably practical for you to keep working from home, then you must keep working from home.

    If it is not reasonably practical to keep working from home, then you can work at your workplace.

    Note: General workers exclude Commonwealth employees, Court Services Victoria staff, people who conduct services, marriages, funerals at a place of worship, and other workers detailed in the Mandatory Vaccination General Workers Order.External Link

  • These requirements don't apply if:

    • a worker has a medical exemption evidenced by an authorised medical practitioner.

    In limited circumstances an operator or employer of a specified setting may be permitted to approve temporary exceptions to address an emergency or critical unforeseen circumstance, such as situations where:

    • a worker is required to perform work or duties at a place that is or are necessary to provide for urgent specialist clinical or medical care due to an emergency situation or a critical unforeseen circumstance
    • a worker is required to fill a vacancy to provide urgent care, to maintain quality of care and/or continue essential operations at the facility due to an emergency situation or a critical unforeseen circumstance
    • a worker is required to attend the facility to respond to an emergency
    • a worker is required to perform urgent and essential work at a place to protect the health and safety of workers or members of the public, or to protect assets and infrastructure.

    If this situation applies, the employer must take all reasonable steps to ensure that the worker does not work for any longer than the period of time necessary to respond to the exceptional circumstance.


Getting vaccinated

  • The COVID-19 vaccine is safe, effective and free.
  • It is very effective at preventing infection, serious illness and hospitalisation from COVID-19.
  • You are eligible to receive a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine if you received your second dose three or more months ago.
  • Before COVID-19 vaccines are used in Australia, they must pass strict safety standards. The vaccines being used in Australia have been used by billions of people around the world.
  • If you have any questions about the COVID-19 vaccine and your health, the best person to speak to is your doctor or pharmacist.
  • To book an appointment at a participating doctor, community health service or local pharmacy, visit this vaccine booking pageExternal Link (or find a pharmacyExternal Link )
  • To book a vaccine at a state-run vaccination centre, call 1800 675 398 or visit this vaccine booking page.
  • Many vaccination centres also offer walk-ins, which means you can turn up for your vaccination without booking beforehand. For a list of vaccination centres, including details on which ones offer walk-ins, visit the Vaccination centres page.
  • For more info on COVID-19 vaccines, speak to your doctor or pharmacist or visit the information page.

FAQs for workers

On what grounds can I get a medical exemption?

The COVID-19 vaccine is safe, effective and free.

You may receive a medical exemption if you are unable to be vaccinated because you:

  • have a medical contraindication to all COVID-19 vaccines available for use in Australia, or
  • have an acute medical condition such as undergoing major surgery or hospital admission for a serious illness, including COVID-19 infection where vaccination can be deferred for up to 4 months after the infection (or earlier if the medical practitioner specifies an earlier date).

These medical exemptions are determined by ATAGI clinical guidance.External Link You can no longer use a medical certificate as evidence of COVID-19 vaccination exemption. If you can’t get any of the approved COVID-19 vaccines for medical reasons,External Link your doctor needs to update your record on the Australian Immunisation Register to show that you have a medical exemption.

Once your exemption has been processed, you can download your COVID-19 digital certificate.

The duration of your medical exemption will be listed on your COVID-19 digital certificate.

You can add your COVID-19 digital certificate to the Service Victoria app or download your certificate from myGovExternal Link to your smartphone.

If you don’t have access to a smartphone, you can print your COVID-19 digital certificate from myGovExternal Link . If you don’t have a printer, you can ask your doctor to print your COVID-19 digital certificate.

Alternatively, you can call Services Australia on 1800 653 809 and ask them to send your immunisation history statement to you. It can take up to 14 days to arrive in the post.

How do I show evidence of my vaccination?

There are 5 ways you can show COVID-19 proof of vaccination to gain entry to businesses and venues in Victoria.

  • COVID-19 digital certificate via the Service Victoria app
  • COVID-19 digital certificate saved to a smartphone wallet
  • Printed copy of COVID-19 digital certificate
  • Printed copy of immunisation history statement
  • Eligible proof of vaccination exemption

Visit How to get your COVID-19 digital certificate for more information.

What if I’ve recently contracted COVID-19 or was a contact?

Most people who have tested positive to COVID-19 can get a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as their acute symptoms resolve, and they have completed their isolation period.

If you were unable to meet your third dose deadline because you were quarantining as a household or household-like contact, you have an additional 14 days from the end of your quarantine period to receive your third dose.

If you were unable to meet your third dose deadline because you were recovering from COVID-19, you have an additional 4 months from the end of your isolation period to receive your third dose. A PCR test must confirm your diagnosis.

However, if you reported your positive rapid antigen test result to the Department of Health and ended your isolation on or before 11:59 pm 4 February 2022, you can provide a written attestation to your employer stating that you tested positive for COVID-19 and were unable to get a PCR test.

There is no recommended interval between COVID-19 recovery and receiving a vaccine dose and ATAGI has no requirement to delay COVID-19 vaccinationExternal Link for people who have been infected with COVID-19.

For more information on vaccination requirements after contracting COVID-19 see:

What happens if I don't meet these requirements?

If you can't provide your employer with evidence that you meet the vaccination requirements for your industry which are outlined above, then your employer cannot allow you to enter the work premises (i.e. come onsite) or to work elsewhere outside your home.

You won't be fined if you do not meet these requirements - but if you are unable to attend work, or you cause your workplace to incur a large fine, this may affect your employment, contract or placement.

What if I'm a volunteer or student on placement?

The vaccine requirement will still apply to you if you're doing volunteer work, unpaid work or student placement work onsite.

What if I'm a contractor?

The vaccine requirement will still apply to you if you're doing contract work onsite.

Is it mandatory for visitors to a healthcare setting or residential aged care centre to be vaccinated?

Vaccination or testing requirements apply in some high-risk settings.

Read more information about visitor restrictions to hospitals and aged care settings at COVIDSafe Settings.

Why are vaccinations required for workers?

Vaccination for workers will help suppress transmission of COVID-19 and protect our health system. The list of workers included are those who can leave home to attend work onsite.

Do interstate workers need to be vaccinated to work in Victoria?

Yes.

Do these requirements apply to me if I'm working from home?

No, they apply if you are working outside of home.

Do these requirements apply to delivery drivers and couriers attending a workplace?

Yes - they apply to freight, postal and courier services.

Will office workers need to have two doses of the vaccine to attend the office?

Yes – all office workers will need to have had at least two doses of the vaccine, or have a valid medical exemption in order to work outside the home. If you do not have at least two doses of the vaccine or don’t have an exemption, and it is reasonably practical for you to keep working from home, then you must keep working from home.

Are court workers covered by the vaccine mandate?

No, court workers and some legal practitioners are not covered by the vaccine mandate.

Do workers need to provide evidence of their vaccination status each time they attend a worksite?

No, not unless you work for different employers, in which case you will have to show the evidence to each different employer.

An operator of a business or organisation does not need to re-collect the information if they already hold vaccination information demonstrating that a worker meets the vaccination requirement.

An Authorised Officer may at any time ask an operator or employer to produce vaccination information that it holds and they must comply with the request.

Are workers who have been vaccinated overseas considered vaccinated for the purposes of working in Victoria? Does it matter what COVID-19 vaccine they had?

Yes. As long as the COVID-19 vaccine workers have had is registered, provisionally registered or recognised by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), or has been approved by a comparable overseas regulator as determined by the TGA.

These include the following COVID-19 vaccines:

  • AstraZeneca (Vaxzevria)
  • AstraZeneca (Covishield)
  • Bharat (Covaxin)
  • COVID-19 Vaccine Janssen (Janssen-Cilag) (only one dose is required for this vaccine)
  • Moderna (SpikeVax)
  • Novavax (Nuvaxovid)
  • Pfizer/BioNTech (Comirnaty)
  • Sinopharm (BBIBP-CorV) (for 18 to 60 year-olds)
  • Sinovac (Coronavac).

How do I check the COVID-19 vaccination status of a worker or patron who has been vaccinated overseas?

To verify the COVID-19 vaccination status of a person who has received their vaccination overseas, you must:

The certificate issued by the overseas authority must be written in English or accompanied by a certified translation and contain the following information:

  • the person's name as it appears in their passport
  • the person's date of birth or passport number
  • the COVID-19 vaccine brand name, and
  • the date of each dose or the date when the person was up to date with their vaccination.

Both paper and digital certificates are acceptable.

Only the vaccines listed below are currently approved or recognised by the TGA:

  • AstraZeneca (Vaxzevria)
  • AstraZeneca (Covishield)
  • Pfizer/BioNTech (Comirnaty)
  • Moderna (Spikevax)
  • Novavax (Nuvaxovid)
  • Sinovac (Coronavac)
  • Bharat (Covaxin)
  • Sinopharm (BBIBP-CorV) (for 18 to 60 year-olds)
  • Johnson & Johnson/Janssen-Cilag (COVID Vaccine) (only one dose is required for this vaccine).

Can I get an Australian COVID-19 digital certificate if I was vaccinated overseas?

Yes. If you have received a COVID-19 vaccination overseas and the vaccine is approved or recognised by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), you can get a recognised vaccination provider in Australia to add your overseas COVID-19 vaccination to the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR).

A recognised vaccination provider is a general practitioner or any other individual or body that is endorsed to administer vaccines in Australia under the Australian Immunisation Register Act by a Commonwealth, State or Territory government.

You need to ensure that the overseas COVID-19 vaccination documents are in English or accompanied by a certified translation.

Once your vaccination status has been uploaded to AIR, you can get a proof of vaccination such as a COVID-19 digital certificate or immunisation history statement.

For more information, please read Services Australia - Overseas immunisationsExternal Link

Is it against the Equal Opportunity Act for my employer or a service provider to require me to get vaccinated?

The Equal Opportunity Act prohibits discrimination in certain areas of life, including employment and the provision of goods and services, based on protected attributes such as disability or religious belief or activity.

Vaccination status is not a protected attribute under the Equal Opportunity Act.

However, if an employer makes vaccinations a condition of employment, or a service provider requires proof of vaccination to access a service, this could be discrimination if you cannot be vaccinated due to a disability or other attribute protected under the Equal Opportunity Act and they do not make an exception for you.

Further information is available on the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission.External Link

FAQs for business and industry

What are the obligations of employers?

Employers are responsible for complying with these vaccination requirements and must collect, record and hold vaccination information for any worker going onsite.

Employers must not permit a worker who doesn't meet these requirements to work outside their home.

Employers must not allow anyone who is working away from home who is not up to date with their vaccination or medically exempt to work onsite.

What information should be recorded by employers?

A record should include:

  • the name of the worker or individual accessing the site
  • their vaccination status
  • their vaccine appointment booking (if relevant)
  • who sighted the evidence
  • the date the evidence was sighted
  • the nature of that evidence (for example, COVID-19 vaccine digital certificate, immunisation history statement, or medical exception letter or certificate).

Do I need to collect vaccination certificates?

You do not need to retain the evidence you sighted if you have confirmed compliance.

If you do retain the evidence you sighted, you will need to comply with both Federal (Privacy Act 1988) and Victorian (Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014, Health Records Act 2001) legislation that regulates this type of health information.

What ability do employers and business owners have to ask for the vaccination status of a worker?

Employers are able to ask for evidence of a worker's vaccination status if these requirements apply to them.

The worker can choose not to disclose, but that worker will then be considered unvaccinated for the purposes of work and must not be allowed to continue working outside their home.

Who is considered an employer for the purposes of COVID-19 vaccination requirements?

An employer means a person who employs or engages a person for work (including volunteers, contractors and students on placement), or who owns, operates or controls a work premises. This includes a person who is self-employed. The work premises can be operated for-profit or not-for-profit purposes.

What data and privacy requirements do employers need to meet?

All details should be recorded and securely kept for the duration necessary to confirm compliance with the COVID-19 Mandatory Vaccination Directions.

Any personal or health information (including about vaccination status) collected, used, managed, stored, disclosed, or transferred must be in accordance with relevant Federal (Privacy Act 1988) and Victorian (Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014, Health Records Act 2001) legislation.

This includes informing employees about why their COVID-19 vaccination status is being collected, collecting only the minimum amount of information required, disclosing the information on only a ‘need-to-know’ basis and taking reasonable steps to keep the information secure.

I am an employer. What happens if I allow a worker who doesn't meet these requirements onsite to continue working?

You face a penalty of up to 120 penalty units ($21,808) if you are an individual - or a penalty of up to 600 penalty units ($109,044) if you are a corporation.

What steps can employers take to assist their workers get vaccinated for COVID-19?

Employers can choose to support their workers by:

  • providing leave or paid time off for employees to get vaccinated
    • for example, the Victorian Government has provided public sector employees with half a day of paid leave to get each shot of the vaccine, and encourages all private sector employers to provide similar allowances for employees
  • helping to ensure employees have access to reliable and up-to-date information about the effectiveness of vaccinations
  • where employees do not wish to be vaccinated, or don’t yet have access to vaccinations, exploring other options including alternative work arrangements where possible.

If a worker from another company attends my site, who is responsible for checking their vaccination status?

Their own employer.

Employers are responsible for their employees, contractors, volunteers or students on placement.

Note: the requirements are different for residential aged care facilities, construction sites, healthcare facilities, and education facilities including childcare. In these cases, the operator of the site or workplace must ensure any worker at the premises meets the requirements.

My business has a casual workforce that does not work from an office. How do I confirm the vaccination status of my workers?

There is no set way employers must collect, record and hold workers’ vaccination information.

Employers can tailor the process to suit their business and employees, as long as they meet that requirement.

Which representative of the employer should be responsible for checking the vaccination status of workers? (e.g. HR or site manager)

There is no set way employers must collect, record and hold workers’ vaccination information.

Employers can tailor the process to suit their business and employees, so long as they meet that requirement.

Does my business need to collect vaccination records for workers that work from home?

No. Operators of businesses and organisations do not need to collect, record and hold the vaccination information of workers who only work from home or are not required to leave home for work purposes.

Our business provides services at people’s homes. Are the residents required to be vaccinated in order for us to perform work at the residence?

No. These requirements only apply to workers.

Can a worker or business still access income or business support if they cannot work because they are not vaccinated?

Eligibility for the COVID-19 Disaster Payment is based on hours of work lost as a result of public health restrictions.

If an employee declines to be vaccinated and as a result is furloughed, or laid off temporarily without pay, by their employer they remain eligible.

However, if the worker has their employment terminated by their employer for failing to comply with the vaccine requirements, they would no longer be eligible. They also won't receive the payment if the payment scheme ends.

A sole trader who chooses not to get vaccinated and therefore cannot work is not eligible for the Victorian Government’s Business Cost Assistance Program, as eligible recipients must be operating in a sector of the economy that’s been shut down.

Can an unvaccinated worker work at a residential aged care facility in an emergency?

In limited circumstances a residential aged care facility provider can approve temporary exceptions for:

  • a worker whose work or duties at the facility are necessary to provide urgent specialist clinical or medical care for a resident due to an emergency, or
  • critical unforeseen circumstances where workers need to be deployed to fill vacancies to provide urgent resident care and the continued essential operations of the aged care service and maintain the quality of care for residents, or
  • a worker who is required to respond to an emergency at the healthcare setting.

Workers with temporary exceptions are required to wear, at a minimum, a surgical mask and face shield at all times that they are present at the work premises.

These exemptions are intended for temporary use only to assist a residential aged care facility manage urgent or unforeseen circumstances. This means a circumstance that the operator of a work premises could not reasonably have foreseen nor planned for which results in a critical need for staff.

Can an unvaccinated healthcare worker work in an emergency?

In limited circumstances an operator of a healthcare setting can approve temporary exceptions:

  • for a worker whose work or duties at the healthcare setting are necessary to provide urgent specialist clinical or medical care due to an emergency or critical unforeseen circumstance (e.g. organ donation or retrieval), or
  • for a worker that is deployed to fill vacancies to provide urgent care, maintain the quality of care for patients or ensure the continued essential operations of the healthcare service due to an emergency or critical unforeseen circumstance(e.g. mass furlough following an outbreak), or
  • for a worker who is required to respond to an emergency at the healthcare setting.

Workers with temporary exceptions are required to wear, at a minimum, a surgical mask and face shield at all times that they are present at the work premises. Noting that hospital PPE guidance may be more stringent depending on the area or type of work undertaken.

These exemptions are intended for temporary use only to assist a healthcare provider manage urgent or unforeseen circumstances. This means a circumstance that the operator of a work premises could not reasonably have foreseen nor planned for which results in a critical need for staff.

Reviewed 12 April 2022

Coronavirus Victoria

24/7 Coronavirus Hotline

If you suspect you may have COVID-19 call the dedicated hotline – open 24 hours, 7 days. The COVIDSafe Information hotline diverts to the national hotline every day from 8pm to 8am.

Please keep Triple Zero (000) for emergencies only.