After early Covid success, Australia is stuck in vaccine slow ...

World

After early Covid success, Australia is stuck in vaccine slow lane

Confusion reigns as Australia’s left hand doesn’t know what its right hand is doing on vaccine policy

Byron Kaye

At Bruce Willett’s general practice near the locked-down Australian city of Brisbane, the phone is running hot as younger people book AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccinations after the government suddenly changed policy to free up use of the drug.

Four months into a vaccine rollout, sold as the way to reopen the country, the programme is mired in confusion and frustration after a run of changing medical advice, public political fighting and weak messaging, public health leaders said.

After an aggressive early response spared the country the high death counts seen around the world since early 2020, a patchwork inoculation strategy risks leaving vulnerable groups at risk, while others defy official health advice, casting a fog over reopening hopes, they added...

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