Australia to STOP making AstraZeneca vaccine after ‘disproportionate criticism’ and fear of blood clots causing millions to dodge life-saving shot
- Australia no longer makes the safe and effective AstraZeneca Covid vaccine
- The life-saving jab fell victim to ‘bad press’ due to extremely rare blood clots
- CSL had a $1.7 billion deal with the federal government to produce 50 million doses
Australia will stop production of the AstraZeneca vaccine onshore, with the life-saving shot falling victim to ‘negative press’.
The federal government had allocated $1.7 billion last November for Australian biomedical company CSL to produce 50 million doses of the Oxford University vaccine at its manufacturing facility in Melbourne.
At the time, global vaccine development for the coronavirus was in its infancy and policymakers prioritized domestic production as a necessity during the crisis.
Australia will stop production of the AstraZeneca vaccine onshore, with the life-saving shot falling victim to ‘negative press’. Pictured: Prime Minister Scott Morrison takes a tour of the CSL vaccine factory on February 12, 2021
The federal government had earmarked $1.7 billion last November for Australian biomedical company CSL to produce 50 million doses of the Oxford University vaccine (pictured, a woman being vaccinated in Melton, Victoria)
But just a month after its launch in March 2021, the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunization pulled the pin on younger Australians who received the dose due to its extremely rare risk of fatal blood clots – about one in 1.6 million.
Of the 12.5 million doses administered in Australia, eight patients died of TTS (thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome) after receiving the injection.
Compared to contracting the virus, the risk of death is about 1.8 percent with 1,450 fatalities in Australia of 130,000 cases.
ATAGI skipped on their health advice, recommending the AstraZeneca shot only to people over 50, before raising the warning to people over 60 — the age group less prone to developing blood clots.
As the Delta outbreak began to devastate NSW and Victorian in the winter months, the medical agency suggested it should be considered for those over 18 who live in a hotspot area.
But by then the reputation of the safe and effective vaccine had been tarnished and many Australians decided to wait for supplies of Pfizer and Moderna from abroad to enter the country.
ATAGI skipped their health advice, recommending the AstraZeneca shot only to people over 50, before raising the warning to over-60s and then to over-18s living in hot spots to consider it (pictured, a vaccination in Bankstown)
“Obviously we don’t want to produce something that won’t be exploited and we’ll have some other options going forward,” University of Queensland associate professor Paul Griffin told 9News.
“It’s obviously gotten a lot of negative press, even though it’s a vaccine that’s proven to be very effective and very safe.”
Some of that ‘bad press’ came from a very unfortunate source in June, with Queensland health officer Jeannette Young supplementing the misinformation and later being accused of ‘fear-mongering’.
“I don’t want an 18-year-old in Queensland to die of a clotting disease that if they got COVID they probably wouldn’t die,” she said after the prime minister urged younger people to consider taking the AstraZeneca shot.
Obviously, once CSL delivers the rest of their AstraZeneca vaccine order to the federal government, it will no longer be manufactured at their Melbourne hub (pictured, Scott Morrison at the CSL facility)
“We have had very few deaths from Covid-19 in Australia in people under the age of 50.
“Wouldn’t it be terrible that our first 18-year-old in Queensland to die from this pandemic died from the vaccine?”
Obviously, once CSL delivers the rest of their AstraZeneca vaccine order to the federal government, it will no longer be manufactured at their Melbourne hub.
“Notwithstanding the perhaps disproportionate criticism this vaccine’s reputation has received, we couldn’t be more proud that the AstraZeneca vaccine has protected many millions of Australians,” CSL chairman Brian McNamee told investors in a statement.
WHY VACCINES ARE IMPORTANT
Vaccination is a simple, safe and effective way to protect people from harmful diseases before they come into contact with it.
Vaccination not only protects individuals, but also others in the community by reducing the spread of preventable diseases.
Research and testing are an essential part of developing safe and effective vaccines.
In Australia, vaccines must pass rigorous safety testing before the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) registers them for use. Vaccine approval can take up to 10 years.
Before vaccines become available to the public, large clinical trials test them on thousands of people.
High-quality studies over many years have compared the health of large numbers of vaccinated and unvaccinated children. Medical information from nearly 1.5 million children around the world has confirmed that vaccination does not cause autism.
People first became concerned about autism and immunization after the medical journal The Lancet published an article in 1998. This article claimed that there was a link between the measles vaccine, mumps, rubella (MMR) and autism. Since then, scientists have completely discredited this article. The Lancet withdrew it in 2010 and printed an apology. The British General Medical Council has removed the author from the medical register for misconduct and dishonesty.
Source: Australian Department of Health