Zambia has been allocated 8.7 million doses of the 270 million COVID-19 vaccines secured this month by the African Union (AU), and this may rise to 25 million doses by December 2021, the Zambian mission at the AU said Sunday.
The Prime MinisterScott Morrison has this morning stressed that the proper tests have been carried out.
Australia has already secured ten million doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, and the jab is expected to be a cornerstone of the nation's broader immunisation program.
Health workers at Warrington Hospital in Cheshire have been reportedly allowed to nominate people to receive leftover vaccine as long as they belong to any of the Government's nine priority groups, which include everyone over 50 or clinically vulnerable.
Australia's vaccination rollout is tipped to be complete by the end of October this year.
"Let's be more conservative on that", Mr Hunt told reporters.
If you're anxious about effectiveness, the Pfizer vaccine has been proven to be around 95% effective in preventing COVID-19 after multiple trials.
The approval by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) is for Australians aged 16 years and over, said Morrison.
He said the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine would commence in early March, subject to TGA approval, after which domestic production will see approximately one million vaccines made available per week, from late March.
"Australia has taken the time, we have been watching and learning from the experience overseas and so we remain within the. time frame that we set a few weeks ago but that will continue to come under challenge for events and circumstances that exist well beyond our shores", he said.
Federal Health Minister, Greg Hunt, encouraged Aussies to take up the vaccine when they their first opportunity.
First, the TGA tick of approval only lasts two years, and will then be re-examined.
Finally, ScoMo also confirmed that there is still "far more to learn" about the vaccine, as we don't now know its full effects on the human body.
"I thank all those involved in the development and assessment of this COVID-19 vaccine, including the researchers, Pfizer, BioNTech and the medical experts at the TGA who have worked around the clock and over Christmas". "You will be aware of the situation and the pressures that we are seeing globally".
Monday marks one year since the first coronavirus case was diagnosed in Australia, which has since had more than 28,700 cases and 909 deaths.
"Our role is to ensure that, if our vaccine candidate is authorised for use, we supply our vaccine doses through a robust process, consistent with the agreement we've entered into with the Australian Government".
In stark contrast, there have been 25 million cases in the U.S. alone and in excess of 400,000 deaths.
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