Australia is 85% below its vaccine delivery target

Nurse receives vaccine jab in Brisbane in March 2021

Australia has only been vaccinated about 600,000 times so far.

Australia has sparked government criticism, falling below its goal of 4 million Covid vaccinations by March 31 by 3.4 million times.

The 85% shortage occurs two days after Brisbane goes into another snap lockdown to fight a small outbreak.

Last week, the government said the deployment of the vaccine does not require urgency given Australia’s low prevalence.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the country has recorded 909 deaths and 29,300 cases, far less than many other countries.

However, sporadic outbreaks have resulted in six blockades in the city in recent months. Critics say situations like the outbreak of Brisbane indicate why a rapid vaccine program is still needed.

Two clusters in Brisbane are associated with virus-infected nurses and doctors from the Covid ward of the same hospital.

It is unclear why these health care workers have not yet been vaccinated, officials said.

Critics have accused the government of mishandling the rollout that began on February 22-slower than many countries.

Australia is vaccinated with Pfizer and AstraZeneca, with a proportion of 2.3 vaccines per 100 people. It is expected to increase in the coming months as access to the vaccine is open to more people.

On Wednesday, Health Minister Greg Hunt said 72,826 vaccinations had been given in the past day.

“It shows that the national vaccination program is accelerating as intended,” he told reporters.

But in January, Prime Minister Scott Morrison promised to give the first vaccination to 4 million people by March.

Earlier this month, the government returned its goal to April, saying that by mid-May, 6 million people would be vaccinated.

He also dialed back a promise to fully vaccinate all Australians by October-now saying that everyone will receive the first shot by then.

Deployment is slow

Australia is currently in the second phase of a four-step deployment targeting a population of 25 million.

Dose is provided to people over 70 years old, people in elderly housing with care, frontline healthcare workers, first aid personnel, people over 55 years old in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islands, and people with underlying health I will.

Authorities have not identified why the pace is so slow, but issues such as booking technology have been reported. There are also reports that some people have chosen not to be vaccinated.

Natural disasters such as the Flood in eastern Australia last week also disrupted the deployment.

Earlier this month, the EU blocked the shipment of AstraZeneca doses to Australia, arguing that their need was growing in Europe.

Australia said a 1 in 250,000 shipment would not have a significant impact on its own program as it built its own manufacturing capacity.

However, Australia urges EU to review ban At that order that Mr Morrison said he was paid.

Labor Party leader Anthony Albanese said the government could not condemn international supply issues with its own approval.

“They said the goal was independent of anything else and would definitely reach it,” he told ABC.

“This is another example of Scott Morrison being always strong in announcements and weak in distribution.”

Brisbane Concerns

The Queensland capital reported two more community outbreaks on Wednesday, resulting in a total of 15 infectious diseases.

There are concerns that the city’s three-day blockade, which is scheduled to end on Thursday, may need to be extended.

Contact tracers have scrambled to track infected people and have isolated more than 1,000 close contacts so far.

The blockade has forced many on Queensland and the interstate highway to cancel their Easter and school vacation plans.

Queensland’s state economy is heavily dependent on tourism, with operators predicting a three-day blockade that cost A $ 35 million ($ 19 million, $ 26 million).