All national cabinets meet to discuss vaccine deployment

The National Cabinet meeting aims to bring the country’s vaccine program back on track and perhaps discuss ways to ease border restrictions later this year.

After the restrictions on two-way travel between Australia and New Zealand were relaxed on Sunday night, one route to and from the country has already been relaxed.

“This is another important milestone for Australians,” Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt told reporters in Melbourne on Sunday.

“It’s the first step in progressive opening … guided by security and working with the people of the states, territories and Australia.”

The National Cabinet will hold the first meeting of the twice-weekly rally on Monday after the vaccine deployment is in turmoil.

The discussion will include changes to Australia’s vaccination policy, including the state’s vaccination implementation plan, with new advice on the AstraZeneca vaccine and additional supply of Pfizer doses.

About a week ago, health officials recommended that only people over the age of 50 be vaccinated with the AstraZeneca vaccine after blood clotting is associated with young people.

The woman who died of blood clots last week was the third case associated with the Australian AstraZeneca vaccine. The first two cases are still in the hospital.

Health Minister Greg Hunt said Australia is now approaching 1.5 million vaccinations after about 330,000 vaccinations were completed last week.

The GP remains the cornerstone of the program, but with very strong support from governments across the country, the state cabinet said it would consider ways for the state to support larger vaccination clinics.

Starting Wednesday, Victorian people over the age of 70 can appear at the Vaccine Center and be jabbed without reservation as the state prepares to expand its deployment.

Meanwhile, three families diagnosed with COVID-19 by a hotel quarantine in New South Wales have been confirmed to have picked up the virus from fellow returning travelers.

Health officials believe that three out of a family of four who stayed in an adjacent room at the Adina Apartment Hotel in Sydney’s City Hall picked up the virus.

“This latest story only reemphasizes the need for rapid and effective deployment of the COVID-19 vaccine,” worker health spokesman Mark Butler told reporters in Adelaide.

“But Australia is still not even in the top 100 countries in the world per capita of the vaccinated population. We need to do better.”