Gov't $1.7bn deal to supply COVID vaccine free to all Australians

Jetsetters could be getting their anti-coronavirus jabs from early 2021

By David Flynn , September 7 2020
Gov't $1.7bn deal to supply COVID vaccine free to all Australians

 Australians will be offered free COVID-19 vaccine shots from January 2021 as part of a $1.7 billion  program announced today by the Federal Government.

The deal provides early access to one of the world’s most promising vaccine candidates, developed by Oxford University and Astrazeneca, should advanced trials and ‘late-stage testing’ prove successful.

“There are no guarantees that these vaccines will prove successful, however the agreement puts Australia at the top of the queue if our medical experts give the vaccines the green light,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison said, reaffirming that “Australians will gain free access to a COVID-19 vaccine” if the trials are successful.

An estimated 3.8 million doses of the Oxford-Astrazeneca vaccine would be available the first two months of 2021 for vulnerable Australians and front-line healthcare workers.

The deal also covers another vaccine under development by the University of Queensland using its ‘molecular clamp’ technology, although this remains in early ‘phase 1’ clinical trials and, pending approval, is not expected to be ready until mid-2021.

Around 84 million doses of both coronavirus vaccines would be produced across 2021, with most manufacturing done at Melbourne’s CSL.

The high production quantity is partly due to the need for two injections of either vaccine: an initial dose would be followed by a booster dose within weeks.

Around 30 million doses would also be distributed to many of Australia’s Pacific island neighbours and some South-East Asian countries.

While the government has no power to enforce vaccination, it would likely adopt all possible measures to encourage the jab, such as making it mandatory for travel, attending school and other activities.

It’s estimated that to reach ‘herd immunity’ status, 80-90% of the population would need to be vaccinated.

PREVIOUS [August 19, 2020] | International travel could bounce back quicker than expected, with all Australians set to receive free COVID-19 vaccination as soon as early 2021.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed today it had signed a 'letter of intent' to secure 25 million doses of the vaccine being developed by Oxford University and British-Swedish pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca if it proves successful in human trials.

Those trials were already “well advanced,” Morrison said during a tour of AstraZeneca’s Sydney laboratory.

Every Australian would be eligible for a free vaccine shot, with Morrison saying the injections would be “as mandatory as possible.”

“The Oxford vaccine is one of the most advanced and promising in the world, and under this deal we have secured early access for every Australian," he said.

This would allow the country’s borders to reopen for Australians with a vaccination certificate potentially pasted into their passport, and remove the need for them to enter mandatory quarantine on their return.

“To fully open the international border without any quarantining or any restrictions probably will require a vaccine to be able to adequately protect vulnerable people in the community and if we get enough vaccine to develop sufficient herd immunity,” Department of Health secretary Professor Brendan Murphy has previously remarked.

What is the Oxford COVID-19 vaccine?

Oxford University’s vaccine is one of more than 165 being developed around the worlds in an unprecedented global push, although only 31 are currently in human trials.

Considered one of the more promising candidates, the Oxford vaccine has already entered large-scale tests, alongside a placebo, in England, the USA, India, Brazil and South Africa to both determine its efficacy as well as identify any rare side-effects which may have been missed in the initial safety trials.

The United States has awarded the project US$1.2 billion in support, while the European Union has an agreement in place with AstraZeneca to deliver 400 million doses following positive test results.

CSIRO researchers have been researching both the Oxford and University of Queensland vaccine candidates.
CSIRO researchers have been researching both the Oxford and University of Queensland vaccine candidates.

The CSIRO, Australia’s national science agency, conducted early trials of the Oxford vaccine at its biosecurity facility in Geelong, Victoria, while also evaluating the best way to administer the vaccine for better protection, from intra-muscular injection to innovative approaches such as a nasal spray. 

However, Liz Chatwin, AstraZeneca’s Australia country president, sounded a note of caution over the vaccine’s prospects, saying there was "no guarantee that this vaccine will protect against COVID-19.”

“We don't even know how long the protection may last, or at what dosage,” she added. “The science and the data is the priority in the next few months.”

Morrison said he expects deals to be put in place for other promising vaccines, rather than “putting all its eggs in one basket.”

The government has also allocated $5 million toward a vaccine built using the University of Queensland’s patented ‘molecular clamp’ technology.

“We are certainly picking our best candidates first and the AstraZeneca one is the first of many,” says Acting Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly, due to its advanced stage of testing.

Fast-tracking the COVID-19 vaccine

The CSIRO notes that due to the global spread and impact of COVID-19, a new approach is being adopted to quickly create effective vaccines.

"Vaccine development usually follows a series of linear steps because of the high costs and failure rate. Then, the potential vaccine has to be approved for use by relevant regulatory bodies and then manufactured in sufficient amounts and distributed around the world."

"If we were to follow this approach, a traditional vaccine could take more than 10 years to be developed – this is not fast enough for a COVID-19 vaccine. Developing a vaccine quickly and safely needed a new model."

These are the steps which researchers are taking to accelerate vaccine production:

  • streamline the process and undertake various stages of development at the same time
  • fund as many vaccine candidates as possible using a range of different approaches and technologies
  • have trials running at a number of locations around the world
  • build manufacturing capacity to be able to meet demand.

Read more: Making a vaccine for COVID-19

When will the COVID-19 vaccine be available?

If broad trials of the Oxford vaccine are considered successful, it would need to be assessed and approved by the Australian Department of Health’s Therapeutic Goods Administration.

Morrison noted that the vaccine would have to satisfy "all the same standards that all vaccines are expected to live up to here in Australia” before being made available to the public, with no “cutting corners” or “undue haste.”

Once that happens, high-rate local manufacturing of the vaccine would begin and "we would hope that this (vaccine) would be made available early next year,” Morrison said.

"If it can be done sooner than that, great. But we are very much in the hands of people wearing white coats… they’ve been doing tremendous work, not just here but all around the world, and we're putting our hope in their science.”

Who will be eligible for the free COVID-19 vaccine?

All Australians will be able to receive a free vaccine shot against COVID-19, and Kelly says "I'm sure there will be long queues – socially distanced, of course – for this vaccine.”

Former CMO and now Secretary of the Department of Health, Professor Brendan Murphy, is heading an expert panel to determine who will receive the vaccine first.

“Your priority, naturally, would start with the elderly and the health workers and those with special needs,” suggests Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt – including the most at-risk categories such as those over 60, people with asthma or heart disease, transplant recipients and cancer patients.

While the cost of the 'free for all' vaccine program was not revealed, the government has also awarded a $24.7 million contract to US medical device company Becton Dickinson for 100 million needles and syringes to ensure the vaccine's national roll-out is not delayed by any worldwide shortage of consumables.

Will the COVID-19 vaccine be mandatory?

Morrison said he wants any COVID-19 vaccine to be “as mandatory as possible” so that the country can reach herd immunity status.

“I'm advised we'll need about a 95% vaccination rate across the country – that is the normal target range for when you're having a vaccination program and we'll be seeking to ensure that that is widely implemented.”

People with “precise medical reasons” would be exempt "but that should be the only basis.”

“I would expect it to be as mandatory as you can possibly make it," Morrison said, although he later clarified his position to say “it's not going to be compulsory to get the vaccine. There are no compulsory vaccines in Australia."

That said, Morrison described the coronavirus as "a pandemic that has destroyed the global economy and taken the lives of hundreds of thousands all around the world and over 400 Australians here, so we need the most extensive and comprehensive response to this to get Australia back to normal."

David

David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

08 Jun 2014

Total posts 254

Excellent news. Cannot wait! 

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

28 Jun 2020

Total posts 1

Not fully true unfortunately, there is no official deal between Astrazeneca and Australia at the moment

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2405

There's a 'letter of intent' between the Australian Govt and AstraZeneca, which we have cited in the article. 

Singapore Airlines - The PPS Club

11 Sep 2015

Total posts 32

David

I could wall paper a very large house with LOI's that never came to anything.

You can't bank 'em and neither should we.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

30 May 2013

Total posts 323

Here's hoping!

31 Mar 2014

Total posts 333

IF the vaccine is proven successful

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 749

Hopefully this vaccine proves efficacious and roll-out can commence early next year.  Such a timeline would mean QF's current plan of beginning to ramp up international flights from about next July is realistic.  

There may be some earlier international flights in a bubble arrangement before July but you can't imagine there will be much until the vaccine is widely distributed leading to confidence in other countries permitting foreign arrivals of certified vaccine recipients as well as insurance companies reissuing international travel insurance policies.

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 194

That doesn't sound very encouraging to suggest mandatory vaccinations are on the cards. Not sure if that's even allowed under the Australian constitution. It does however prove the "conspiracy theorists" right, because they've been saying vaccines will become mandatory for travel (and later on, to participate in other aspects of society) for years now.

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 749

The constitution doesn't mention vaccines.  The government can enforce it by denying benefits to those who choose not to vaccinate just as the "no jab, no play" policy works for children entering kinder or childcare.  

It is also likely that many countries will make proof of vaccination as a prerequisite to entry so if you choose not to vaccinate you won't be able to go anywhere or get travel insurance coverage.  This will probably be proved by a stamp in your passport and would work very much like many African countries who have made yellow fever vaccination a prerequisite to entry for many years.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

28 Oct 2011

Total posts 379

For many years, several countries required inbound passengers to prove that they had received a Yellow Fever vaccination before they would be admitted to their countries. There was a little "immunisation passport" that you would carry, listing all your vaccinations and the dates on which they were received. So requiring a particular vaccination before travel would not be a new requirement - just one that hasn't been used for the last few decades.

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 194

What are you talking about? The yellow fever requirement has been required for decades and continues to be required. It has never been rescinded. Several Pacific island nations also require proof of MMR vaccination since 2019. Pakistan requires proof of polio vaccination for all Pakistani citizens in order to leave the country. China requires proof of polio vaccination for travellers entering overland from Pakistan. Saudi Arabia requires several vaccines to get a Hajj visa and also an oral polio shot is given to everyone upon entering the country.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 950

Freqflyer I went to senagal last year and when I came back and ticked been to west Africa box. The quarantine person was rather relieved when I said I hadn’t been out of Dakar as otherwise I may have been asked for my yellow fever card.

Singapore Airlines - The PPS Club

11 Sep 2015

Total posts 32

And of course they  believed you.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 950

Journey I did have evidence I had been there if asked. The yellow fever area’s were quite remote. Being up front and straight forward counts for something. 

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 194

Aha I see. That being said Patrick, Australia has never officially mandated a yellow fever shot for those passengers coming from an endemic area. Only recommended it. By contrast, it's required by many African and Asian countries, even those that are not considered yellow fever endemic zones, from all travellers who've arrived from an endemic zone (parts of Sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America/Caribbean) within the last 10 days.

It becomes more complicated if you arrive on a non-direct flight, in which case it's unlikely you'd be asked for one, but this may depend on the country. For instance, if you arrived in Singapore on an Emirates flight transiting Dubai from Lagos, Nigeria, you probably won't be asked for one because no one will know you came from Nigeria. They just assume you came from Dubai, since there are no direct flights from Nigeria. But if you arrived on a direct Kenya Airways flight, then yes, you may be asked for one.

From my own observations though, say in Bangkok, Africans are removed from immigration queues and asked about their yellow fever certificates, while those who don't look African tend to be left alone. Only airports and maybe sea ports will ask for such proof, never land borders.

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 194

In my last sentence I was referring to Asian country land borders. Within the yellow fever endemic zone countries and adjacent non-endemic ones such as Egypt, it's quite possible that yellow fever vaccination certificates (or exemptions) are checked at the land borders too, although enforcement probably varies depending on the country. That's not something I can speak of with any experience, since the last time I stepped foot on African or Latin American soil was when I was a young child many years ago.

Since then I've only travelled within Asia, Australia/NZ, North America, Europe and the Pacific, all regions that don't require a yellow fever vaccine certificate if you haven't been within the endemic zone prior to travel.

QFF

19 Sep 2013

Total posts 162

When I travelled to the Amazon, I had to have a series of injections, including Yellow Fever vaccination. I also had to carry my proof of Yellow Fever vaccination with me so that I could re-enter the States on my way back to Australia. I'm presuming that if you plan to visit the Amazon you would still need the Yellow Fever vaccination.

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 194

grov, the United States does not require yellow fever shots as a condition of entry, even if you've just returned from a yellow fever endemic zone. Australia is stricter but doesn't strictly speaking require them either (they can't refuse your entry, especially as a citizen, if you don't have one). The WHO website shows this quite clearly. You may have been required to possess such a certificate for entry to the Latin American countries you visited, though according to a friend who went to Ecuador in 2017, he was not asked for one and didn't have one either, despite that country being on the list of states that need proof of yellow fever vaccination. As I understand it, he entered and left by air and did not visit any other Latin American countries on that trip.

And yes, the requirement to show proof of yellow fever vaccination to enter and/or depart endemic countries (and others in non-endemic zones, especially in Asia) has been in place for decades, but enforcement varies.

The most recent change by the WHO is that yellow fever vaccination certificates are now valid for life, not just 10 years as previously. More recently, an MMR vaccine requirement has come into force for parts of the Pacific. 

Flying High - if you can't even choose what goes into your own body then you aren't free. Mandatory vaccination represents a major ethical quandary. First of all, the only previous mandate applying to Australia that I've heard of, but is unverified, is the smallpox vaccination mandate that dates back over 100 years. However, given the lack of technology back in those days it would have been difficult to enforce.

I think there will be a ton of opposition to any mandatory vaccination requirement as a condition of travel, especially if it applies to returning Australian citizens.

13 Feb 2015

Total posts 60

And what's wrong with having a vaccine mandatory? It's not even the first time that's been in place. I'd also be interested if you could point to the part of the Constitution that doesn't allow this to happen.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

04 Nov 2011

Total posts 350

What a misleading headline....there is no guarantee there even will be a successful vaccine. Let alone if it will be early next year which is very ambitious. 

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2405

Hi Russell: we're just reporting what's been said, including the timeline suggested by the PM. Of course the vaccine needs to be effective, even the local head of AZ has admitted (as we have quoted) there's no guarantee on that score.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

24 Jan 2018

Total posts 328

Nothing 'misleading' about it Russell (unless its been changed).  

03 Jan 2012

Total posts 95

Is there a vaccine for Stupidity?  Because locking up everyone in Australia for over a year and waiting for a foreign Nation to develop a safe and efficient vaccine is the stupidest policy decision that any Australian Government has ever taken.  "Until it is safe = never".  End lockdown now and allow herd immunity to develop; the same as happened in Sweden by design and in the US, UK and elsewhere by accident.  They're all well on the way to normalization - except for the bleating hysteria of the MSM in each respective Country.

Qf

26 Apr 2015

Total posts 19

Sweden does not yet have herd immunity and I don’t believe 15,000 deaths in Australia would be acceptable to most people - that’s what Sweden’s current death rate equates to and it hasn’t finished yet....

03 Jan 2012

Total posts 95

Yesterday, Sweden recorded 3 Coronovirus deaths.  Most deaths almost everywhere have been in the over 80s and even over 90s.  Very few deaths have been recorded in the under 50s, with practically none in the under 25s.  If you're happy to rob the life from the Nations young folk - espeocally the under 25s; rob them of life opportunities, wealth, education at school and college and steal from their future in order to protect a tiny percentage of the most elderly in Society, then go ahead.  IMHO, its a very stupid Policy.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 950

521303 as I say often it is not death young people face but chronic illness. That is who we are protecting. I am not sure we are robbing them of your lists university enrolment are virtually at an all time high. And wiping out the oldies seems a bit harsh.

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 194

521303, that's the most sensible comment I've read on here so far. It's hilarious to read all the comments of people here who are dying to have some unproven vaccine that's been rushed to market injected into them, thinking it will "save" them and allow life to return back to normal. I'm sure that if a covid vaccine requirement goes into force to travel, that will be far from the end of it. Already there has been talk of requiring vaccines for everything from sporting events to supermarkets and workplaces. It will be the start of mass adult vaccination programs that will eventually be as aggressive as their childhood counterparts.

Travel will also have more hoops to jump through than a mere vaccine requirement - as evidenced by a recent BBC article about travel in 2022.

I've already been aware of this plan for several years.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

30 May 2013

Total posts 323

Oh come on. Sweden has had 6,000 COVID-19 deaths. Neighbouring Norway, with half the population, has had just 260 deaths.  Letting so many people drop dead for the sake of the economy is unforgivable.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 950

52103 what’s the thing with a foreign nation. I know some of you don’t think Queensland is part of Australia but the Queensland uni vaccine is also a front runner and will probably be in the mix. Not sure where you got your figures from on herd immunity and not there is no herd immunity for the other more famous coronavirus the common cold.

P
P

17 Jan 2018

Total posts 65

Sorry but David you need to be a little more critical. This is pure speculation. Even the CEO of AstraZeneca is saying that!!!

However, Liz Chatwin, AstraZeneca’s Australia country president, sounded a note of caution over the vaccine’s prospects, saying there was "no guarantee that this vaccine will protect against COVID-19.”

“We don't even know how long the protection may last, or at what dosage,” she added. “The science and the data is the priority in the next few months.”

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2405

Hi P. Our habit and preference is to report, and that's what we have done. As you can see, we included Liz Chatwin's comments in the article. Of course the vaccine needs to be effective; Morrison's letter of intent is based on it being effective, and we included the early 2021 timeframe based on his own comments, also quoted. It also follows that once the vaccine is being administered, international travel will be back on the cards.

JTG
JTG

Singapore Airlines - The PPS Club

11 Jul 2014

Total posts 44

There are so many questions still to ask and so much research that still needs to be undertaken. What happens if the vaccine is only 70% effect? That would be enough to encourage people to take it as long as the side effects weren't horrendous,as this would save lives. But would international open if 30% of people were still spreading it in the community. The immunity passport would only say that you have taken the vaccine, not how effective it is.

These are the types of questions that will need to be discussed in the coming months. 

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 194

Flu vaccines are basically a dud and a new one is developed every year. Flu outbreaks also occur every year. More than likely, a covid vaccine would need annual boosters due to mutations. Again, this has already been speculated in the mainstream media.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 950

Freqflyer the flu vaccine has worked for me for te past 20 years so not entirely a dud. Because it doesn’t work for some people doesn’t mean it’s a dud. I’m sure the Covid vaccine will require annual shots.

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 749

Vaccines are never 100% effective.  For example the measles vaccine is considered amazingly efficacious with its figure of 95%.  A good corona virus vaccine would need to be like the flu virus and be about 70% effective but this would only offer herd immunity if about 75% took the vaccine.  If the vaccine is less efficacious, then the % of population who has the vaccine needs to be higher.  Here is a good article on the topic. https://theconversation.com/how-effective-does-a-covid-19-coronavirus-vaccine-need-to-be-to-stop-the-pandemic-a-new-study-has-answers-142468

Given there is a strong likelihood that the coronavirus will gradually mutate, there is little likelihood that a vaccine will give lifelong immunity and will need to be topped up but this also means that herd immunity without a vaccine is extremely unlikely as people can get the virus more than once.  This means those who think we can just let the virus run lose and it will all be over are just dreaming.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 950

Reeves fully agree as we don’t get herd immunity for the COVID common cold

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 194

Researchers have already speculated that a corona virus vaccine would require at least 2 shots spaced maybe 4 weeks apart and quite possibly require annual re-vaccination, much like the flu shot. Patrick is also correct in his assessment.

I think this may fall under one of those more optimistic / cheekily verging on click bait headlines but I can’t blame the desire to offer some hope. 

Joe
Joe

03 May 2013

Total posts 516

Better happen at Christmas or else many will go under...what's worse Covid-19 or mental health and livelihoods?

30 Apr 2020

Total posts 15

It sounds like really great news until you get a dose of reality,  it sounds too good to be true. Still so many unknowns, about the vacinne itself, its manufacture and distribution.  I'd like into be optimistic but this virus has way of striking back when you least expect it.

I'm confident is with 165 vaccines under development some should be successful but it's the timeframe that's critical,  the long this goes on the more destruction it inflicts on people's health and livelihoods.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 950

We may end up needing a cocktail of vaccines like we do for flu.

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 950

Skier drugs will certainly be in the mix like they are for flu etc.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

23 Mar 2015

Total posts 47

You really should not publish LNP Lies and PR! There is NO vaccine, NO deal, not even an agreement. Pure lies and bullshit to distract from the aged care scandals.

"AstraZeneca has since confirmed that the deal is only a letter of intent with no formal agreement in place." The new information casts some doubt over some of Morrison’s claims, including the assertion that it puts Australia “at the front of the pack” of nations vying for a vaccine.

Shadow Health Minister Chris Bowen pointed out meanwhile that formal agreements have been in fact signed between AstraZeneca and other countries such as the US, UK and China, placing Australia a long way from the front of the pack.

So many 'negative nancys' here! Yes it's a "letter of intent", that's mentioned in the article and it's sensible that this is all that any government should sign until the vaccine is proven, unless you're suggesting ScoMo should hand over a cheque without proof of efficacy? Do some reading and research, the Oxford vaccine is a front-runner as things stand and the government is smart to get in now and set things up so that if it's proven a winner, it can get enough doses produced and given free to every Australian so we can get back to normal when it comes to living work, travel etc.

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 194

I don't think a vaccine will allow us to get back to normal. That's not the plan. Several articles about the future of travel have been published by the likes of the BBC, National Geographic and if i recall correctly, the Wall Street Journal. They predict far more hoops to jump through than a mere vaccine requirement (if it goes into force). Testing and tracking is likely here to stay and quarantine requirements may be a permanent feature for anyone arriving from what they define an "outbreak zone" or if they test positive. Masks may be compulsory on board flights for some time to come.

I really hope we do go back to normal soon, but at this point hope is all we've got because chances are we're not. They wouldn't be going to all this trouble right now only to wind it back to the way it was until early 2020 in 6 or 12 months now.

31 Mar 2020

Total posts 11

All Australians will be able to receive a free vaccine shot against COVID-19,

As i grind my teeth i think about the many Australians stuck overseas that

might not be able to travel without the jab. Could the overseas consulates

administer the vaccine ?

That's a good point Ozyjon, I hope that Australian embassies and consulates overseas can make arrangements to do that.

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 194

LOL!! Overseas consulates are not doctors offices! If you want the shot, you go get it at the local clinic or hospital. Or it could be administered at the airport on arrival.

Thai Airways International - Royal Orchid Plus

15 Jan 2013

Total posts 303

i will do whatever it takes to have it and have my holidays for 2021.

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 194

Lots of people not concerned about side effects. An overseas holiday is not that important in the grand scheme of things and you may find countries won't reopen as quickly as you think either.

07 May 2020

Total posts 45

Vaccine mania is a ridiculous solution. If a vaccine is developed sometime and it is even good enough to have a 50% efficacy, and you manage to force it upon 100% of the population, you are only going to have 50% of the population with some protection. But you won't know which 50%. So do you expect that governments in pandemic panic mode are going to change their lockdown and border strategies in Australia? I doubt it very much. The big dream or delusion of these governments in panic mode is that there will be a miracle vaccine developed with 95% + efficacy. It's  very long shot. But dream on none the less.

01 Sep 2017

Total posts 3

Assuming the vaccine has 50% efficiency, this isn't terribly good but this is why we have multiple rounds of shots. If each shot has a 50% chance of seroconverting then two shots per person will lead to 75% immunity for the population. Given the relatively low R0 value of COVID19 compared to measles, this is likely to be enough for herd immunity to begin working. Higher is always better of course.

Given some people are... dubious (sigh) about vaccines, the overall immune % of the population is likely to be lower than that (maybe 60-70%?). Regardless, that would be an excellent foundation for reopening the economy to international business and travel (likely with proof of vaccination).

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 950

In addition they may have a couple of vaccines in the shot if they are complementary and compatible.

07 May 2020

Total posts 45

Monkeyo. Efficacy doesn't work like that. You can't force a human to develop an immune response by simply giving him/her more vaccination shots until that person develops immunity. If the vaccine has a 50% efficacy, it means at the best that 50% of the population will develop some immunity. So the other 50%, who you don't know who they are, are still going to get infected. This may not be a problem with some viral diseases which are not aa deadly as Covid 19. But who is going to be the brave person who gets vaccinated, knows they only have a 50% chance of having immunity, and then goes and exposes themselves to the virus which may kill them, just as it does now in our population without a vaccine. Lets see which brave fearless Australian premier is going to try that experiment with a deadly virus and a vaccine with only 50% efficacy. The vaccine saviour is a myth.

01 Sep 2017

Total posts 3

I believe there might be a difference in terminology here that is resulting in us disagreeing. When I refer to the efficiency of the vaccine I'm referring to the % chance that the single shot will result in immunity. I believe you're referring to the overall course (multiple shots) when you refer to efficacy, is this correct?

Regardless, having multiple shots of a vaccine is beneficial. It is currently recommended that women following birth are given an MMR booster if they have low IgG levels: https://www.ogmagazine.org.au/17/2-17/vaccine-non-responder/ 

Note that the article does say that following a non converting MMR vaccine ANOTHER dose should be given. This is on top of the three rounds of vaccinations that every person should have been given as a child. Whilst it does say that should that additional shot not lead to immunity then yes, the person should act like they are not immune. However these two additional shots are obviously effective otherwise they would not be offered.

Furthermore, as patrickk mentioned if multiple vaccines are complimentary and compatible they are likely to be rolled into one, further improving the conversion rate.

It is important to note that your position hinges on a 50% efficacy rate. At higher levels approaching 70% we're looking more and more at herd immunity, which has proven itself with measles and other diseases.

Joe
Joe

03 May 2013

Total posts 516

Hope this can be brought forward so people can have a nice Christmas and be with family or give them a good holiday.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

19 May 2020

Total posts 9

What strikes me the most about the ‘debate’ about the COVID vaccine is that not many people understand either how the immune system works or how vaccines work to boost it. If one gets vaccinated against something, the immune system not only makes antibodies/ interferons but also ‘memory’ cells. These way when an individual gets exposed to the same disease-causing agent in the future, their immune system will react faster and the disease will be much milder than in the first exposure. It’d be great if people on tv educate others instead of scaring everyone and only focusing on bad stuff that boosts their ratings

12 Dec 2012

Total posts 994

The main issue with this is that we don't understand the process which turns a normal T or B cell into a memory cell, nor do we understand why some memory cells die after a time, while others don't.

If we can determine why a memory cell keyed to target chicken pox lasts a life time, we can figure out how to cause a flu or cold targeting memory cell to do so.

Some memory cells dying is why some vaccines need booster shots and others don't.


Hi Guest, join in the discussion on Gov't $1.7bn deal to supply COVID vaccine free to all Australians