As the U.S. sees demand plateauing for COVID-19 vaccines, Australia is facing a shortage of both vaccine supplies and healthcare workers.
Australian health officials project that the nation’s vaccination program will face delays from June to July. The slowdown is partly a result of limited shipments of the Pfizer vaccine. Australia expects to receive 1.7 million doses of the vaccine this month and another 2.8 million in July.
Australian officials are also aiming to enlist a greater number of general practitioners to help dispense vaccines later in the summer when supplies are likely to increase.
Like several other countries, Australia has also limited the use of the AstraZeneca (LON:AZN) vaccine over the risk of rare blood clots. Health officials there recently recommended the AstraZeneca vaccine only for adults 60 and older.
Australia’s Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly recently stressed in an interview with the country’s ABC network that the benefits of the AstraZeneca vaccine “far outweighed” the risks.
The country is still on track to provide a primary dose of COVID-19 vaccine by the end of 2021, according to Australian officials.
It also anticipates having an ample Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) vaccine supply starting in August.
Sydney, Australia’s most populated city, has recently emerged as a COVID-19 hotspot, but cases of the novel coronavirus across Australia have been limited in 2021.
The country has only had a single COVID-19 fatality since November 2020.
Filed Under: Infectious Disease