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Australia’s vaccine crawl: 2023 is the likely rollout completion date

  • June 01 2021
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Australia’s vaccine crawl: 2023 is the likely rollout completion date

By Maja Garaca Djurdjevic
June 01 2021

While Greg Hunt won’t admit it, Australia’s vaccine rollout is lagging dangerously behind much of the rest of the world. And while our government is quick to rank us first in regards to our wins on the health and economic fronts, it sure isn’t too happy when asked about our global vaccine standing.

Australia’s vaccine crawl: 2023 is the likely rollout completion date

Australia’s vaccine crawl: 2023 is the likely rollout completion date

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  • June 01 2021
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While Greg Hunt won’t admit it, Australia’s vaccine rollout is lagging dangerously behind much of the rest of the world. And while our government is quick to rank us first in regards to our wins on the health and economic fronts, it sure isn’t too happy when asked about our global vaccine standing.

Australia’s vaccine crawl: 2023 is the likely rollout completion date

As Victoria grapples with its fourth lockdown, it has become clear that Mr Hunt may no longer be on the ball. In fact, several of his assurances are in tatters in recent days, including the very dangerous and quite simply false assertion that 100 per cent of aged care residents have been vaccinated.  

While aged care residents and workers were identified as the priority group when the vaccine finally reached Aussie shores, the outbreak in Victoria has revealed that some aged care homes had not even received their first dose of the vaccine. And while that has now reportedly been reversed, with the government directing extra doses to these facilities last week, could it be a case of ‘too little, too late’?

As of end-May, it is estimated only 2 per cent of Australian adults have had two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine.

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And recent research isn’t promising an acceleration, with data from Provocate revealing that while the Victorian lockdown has seen a lift in vaccination rates in the past week, the rates were still half the 200,000 daily vaccinations needed to meet the federal budget’s revised target of completing the rollout by the end of 2021.

In fact, according to the figures, Australia dropped five places in the past month from 5th to 10th of the 14 nations benchmarked by the Australian Department of Health.

“Australia’s lagging rate of vaccination at home is having a significant impact on its global standing, as well as the risk of market share losses to competitor countries that reopen faster,” said Provocate managing director Troy Bilsborough.

“For example, Australia has one of the slowest start dates and lowest vaccination rates of all G20 nations.”

Provocate’s outlook is worrying, with Mr Bilsborough noting that until Australia is consistently averaging at least 1 million jabs in arms per week, every week, then Aussies should plan for a vaccine rollout completion closer to 2023 than 2021.

“The current ‘grass is greener’ message around an end of year vaccination boost is the single biggest risk to Australia’s vaccine rollout right now and will only increase as federal election pressure mounts,” Mr Bilsborough said.

“Unless Australia can strike a deal with a close ally like the US or UK to loan it urgent vaccine surplus between now and October, the only way for Australia to get back on track is collectively convince itself to accept and administer its current vaccine stocks and actively reduce promises of safer batches to come,” he added.

But it’s not just the businesses advisory firms that are concerned, with journalists now taking aim at the Health Minister and presenting him with some pretty hard truths.

In fact, just last week, Natalie Barr, the host of the Sunrise Show, asked Mr Hunt whether Aussies are hesitating to get the jab because for months they heard the words “no rush” from both himself and the PM. Mr Hunt then repeatedly interrupted Ms Barr with “that’s false”.

She, however, was not deterred, persisting with the words “your government and the Prime Minister were saying there is no rush”.

It was the producer who saved the segment by playing a clip of the PM repeating “it’s no race”.

Well, luckily it’s not a race, because if it was, we’d be doing dreadfully.

Australia’s vaccine crawl: 2023 is the likely rollout completion date
Australia’s vaccine crawl: 2023 is the likely rollout completion date
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About the author

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Maja Garaca Djurdjevic is the editor of nestegg and Smart Property Investment. Email Maja at [email protected]

About the author

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Maja Garaca Djurdjevic

Maja Garaca Djurdjevic is the editor of nestegg and Smart Property Investment. Email Maja at [email protected]

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