The Vaccine Operations Centre reported that more than 450,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine have arrived from the United Kingdom as part of a dose-sharing agreement between our two countries.
The doses, the first of four million to arrive from the UK this month, will be batch-tested by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) and immediately distributed across the country on a per capita basis.
Australia will send four million doses from our supplies to the UK in December.
Combined with the arrival of an expected million Moderna (Spikevax) vaccine doses over the coming weeks, the doses from the UK will enable the “heavy lifting” of the Vaccine Operations Centre’s rollout program to be brought forward from October and November to this month.
Last week, Australia hit a new seven-day high for the rollout program, with more than 1.9 million vaccine doses administered across the country.
Adding to the rollout’s momentum, the TGA has provisionally approved the use of the Moderna vaccine for adolescents aged 12 to 17 years. This follows the TGA approval last month of its use in adults aged 18 years and older.
The first doses of the Moderna vaccine will be available through community pharmacies and workplace vaccination hubs.
The Government is absolutely committed to vaccinating children as part of the rollout program – and it is expected everyone aged 12 to 18 years will have access to a vaccine during 2021.
Supplying and producing the vaccine
Manufacturing vaccines onshore has been essential to the progress of the Centre’s rollout. CSL has now manufactured and supplied 16.1 million doses of vaccine for use in Australia.
Last week, 1.4 million doses of Pfizer and 505,300 doses of AstraZeneca were released for distribution.
Over the coming days, the TGA will conduct sample testing of over 900,000 doses of Pfizer vaccine, along with 1.3 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine produced onshore by CSL, prior to releasing the vaccines for distribution.
Distributing the vaccine
With support from our distribution partners DHL and Linfox, more than 2.8 million vaccine doses have been delivered across Australia to metropolitan, rural and remote locations, along with 3,856 deliveries of consumables.
Administering the vaccine
Upon publishing this update this week, close to 1.7 million doses were administered across the country, taking the total number of doses administered over 20 million. It took 45 days to reach the first million doses of vaccine administered and 3 days for the most recent.
Original story found on the Australian Government Department of Health website. Note: Content has been edited for style and length.
Nina Alvarez is a Content Producer for Healthcare Channel. Her interests include writing, particularly about the healthcare sector and the many ways it can improve to further benefit people from all walks of life.