Australia’s change of Astra Zeneca’s vaccine for people under 50 to Pfizer means the country is abandoning its goal of vaccinating everyone before the end of the year. Covid sets its own rules, and you can’t set your own agenda, says Prime Minister Scott Morrison.
Passengers arrive from Melbourne at Sydney Airport, where they are tested in this February photo.
Not all adult Australians will be offered the first dose of the vaccine before 2022.
It was announced this weekend that Australia would instead buy another 20 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine, but that they are not expected to arrive until the fourth quarter.
The delay in doses of the vaccine means delaying the opening of the borders of countries that were closed for more than a year to the future.
It is not safe to open our international borders now. Worldwide, covid-19 is still widespread. We are still seeing an increase in new cases, especially in developing countries, ”says Morrison.
For the bleeding Qantas Airlines, which is expected to start resuming some international flights in October, it looks dark. The one exception is New Zealand, where Australians can travel to it in a travel bubble starting Monday. It could be a bubble with Singapore as well, but aviation expert Rico Merkert at the University of Sydney is questionable if it ever will.
Covid-19 in Australia
Australia has 29,400 cases of coronavirus, and 909 people have died of COVID-19. The country witnessed two major outbreaks, one in March – April 2020, followed by one in July – August.
The patient is currently under care in the intensive care unit.
A total of 16.1 million tests were performed, of which 0.2 percent were positive.
Source: Australian Department of Health (12 April).