Australia's NSW centre has paused all AstraZeneca vaccinations

Joanna Estrada
April 10, 2021

Local health authorities changed their recommendation to say the country's almost 12 million people aged under 50 should take the Pfizer product instead of AstraZeneca.

Australia has doubled its order of the Pfizer Inc Covid-19 vaccine, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Friday, as it raced to overhaul its inoculation plan over concerns about the risks of blood clots with the AstraZeneca Plc vaccine.

French Health Minister Olivier Véran, soon to be 41, will also be among those to receive a second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine after having first taken a dose from AstraZeneca on 8 February.

"Recommendations may be updated as further information becomes available on interchangeability".

But they stressed that older Australians should continue to trust the AstraZeneca shots.

On Thursday night, it was announced people aged under 50 years of age should avoid the AstraZeneca vaccine, due to rare blood clots appearing in four to six people per million.

France's top health body will on Friday say that recipients of a first dose of AstraZeneca's traditional Covid-19 vaccine who are under 55 should get a second shot with a new-style messenger-RNA vaccine, two sources aware of the plans said on Thursday.

Germany was the first European country to recommend that people under 60 who have had a first AstraZeneca shot should receive a different product for their second dose.

Following the National Cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has hinted at the next country Australia might arrange a travel deal with.

Australia has been one of the world's most successful countries in containing the spread of Covid-19, with fewer than 30,000 cases and 1,000 deaths for a population of 25 million and virtually no ongoing community transmission.

He said it had been a "fairly busy" evening working with Pfizer and the company had been a "very good partner".

Australia's opposition party has denounced the Morrison government over the country's vaccine rollout.

Labor Leader Anthony Albanese labelled the AstraZeneca development a "debacle" and criticised the government for not buying a wider range of vaccine candidates.

Morrison and Murphy said they were confident there would be enough doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech and Novavax vaccines to complete the inoculation of Australian adults.

Australia's Labor Leader Anthony Albanese.

Experts are hoping the blip in the vaccine rollout won't lead to a large number of people deciding not to get a vaccine.

There has so far been only one case of blood clotting in a patient who received the AstraZeneca vaccine in Australia.

The Pfizer jab is now preferred for younger Australians.

"It's ok to work remotely, but if you are the boss of a multi-billion pound healthcare company with a Covid vaccine I can see why people would be thinking 'why isn't Pascal here?'".

Some 533,000 people are affected by the decision, the HAS said.

At the time, European Union officials said AstraZeneca had requested authorization from the Italian government to export some 250,000 doses from its Anagni plant, close to Rome.

"Australians won't forget who is responsible for failing to deliver on what are his own promises and his own commitments when it comes to these issues".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

Discuss This Article

FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER