Young people across the South West are jumping at the chance to roll up their sleeves for WA after the State’s COVID-19 vaccination roll out expanded this week. West Australians aged 16 to 29 are now eligible to get a Pfizer jab at State-run clinics, with Monday’s announcement prompting more than 73,000 bookings in 24 hours. Accounting student Heidi Grace was among those in Bunbury keen to get vaccinated. She said she had been patiently waiting for her age group to become eligible and it was a relief to finally be able to book a vaccine. “(The) majority of my friends all know the benefits of getting vaccinated and a lot of young people want to go travelling again, so it’s important we do our part to get back to normal,” Miss Grace said. The 21-year-old said she had done her research and knew several people who had been vaccinated, so she was not worried. “I feel like people are scared from speculation, but we’re not a vulnerable category and it’s better for us to get vaccinated to create a herd immunity,” she said. “We’re so lucky that we live in WA and we don’t have a situation going on like over east. “Some people need to be more considerate of that, because most of us know someone who is high risk to catching and being affected by COVID.” Bunbury local Sahra Patane, echoed the call, saying she was getting vaccinated to help protect those in her family who were high risk. “At first I was hesitant, but my mum encouraged me to get vaccinated,” she said. “I work at a petrol station on Bussell Highway and we get a lot of Perth people coming down south, so it’s best to take that step to protect myself.” WA Country Health Service’s COVID vaccine lead Margaret Abernethy said they were excited younger people were now eligible. “This is great for the people in the South West who were not previously eligible but wanted to be vaccinated,” she said. “That they now have access to this vaccine is fantastic. It is that age group that appears to be more vulnerable at the moment.” Health Minister Roger Cook this week said it was more vital than ever that people were vaccinated as quickly as possible. He said expanding the rollout was important because it simplified the message around vaccination eligibility. The next available Bunbury appointment was September 21 at the time of print. Bookings can be made via rollup.wa.gov.au.