05 November 2020

Neither of the new vaccine deals will cover the Australian population, and one of them we cant currently distribute.

We support moves to secure more advance supply deals, but we were late to the party and are barely playing catch up.

We know no one vaccine will be a silver bullet, and even if successful, they wont be ready at the same time.

Thats why weve been pushing the government to reach the 5-6 supply deals other like-minded countries have.

This deal takes us to 4.

The ABC reports all four vaccines we have supply deals with would likely require 2 doses.

If the Pfizer vaccine (announced today) achieves first approval, it would only be available to 5 million people, or 1 in 5 Australians.

An article just yesterday in the Conversation noted that Australia was still at the end of a long queue, given the hundreds of millions of doses of Pfizer mRNA vaccines already pre-purchased by the United States, Japan and the European Union.

And the Novavax vaccine deal in the first instance would leave 5 million without access.

The Pfizer vaccine is an mRNA vaccine. It needs to be stored and distributed at temperatures as low as -80 degrees.

We currently have no capacity to do this.

So even if it was ready tomorrow, we couldnt use it. Thats a big problem.

We are keen to see further detail of the governments touted vaccine roadmap. Who is in, who is out, the pathway to secure more, and how we get it in the hands of Australians.

The supply deals are a step in the right direction, but we were late to the party.

So these deals dont cover all Australians, and our supply chain simply is not ready.

Its time to catch up, and fast.