Can Canada’s Successful Vaccine Rollout Show Australia a Way Out of the Blockage?



After a late start, vaccination rates have accelerated significantly in Australia, and there are now 6,240,640 Australians. Completely vaccinated Over half of the population (52.8 percent) has at least one jab on their arm.

However, Australians want to hear that vaccination is the world leader, but in reality it is Canada and Spain’s vaccination efforts that are currently leading the world. Not getting close to 73% of the population over age 12 Vaccination In 52 days.

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau impresses Canadian voters that the performance is worth risking an early general election in an attempt to regain the majority of parliament lost by his Liberal Party in 2019. thinking about.

Australian politicians facing federal elections by May next year have a temporary interest in the outcome of Trudeau’s bet.

But that’s Canada’s vaccination record, and what we can learn from it is a much more pressing concern.

It is the country we identify most in terms of culture, region, population and distribution, and government system. Canada’s success gives Australia the hope that we can reach the critical mass of vaccination fairly quickly and learn to live with COVID-19.

Lockdown Australians eager to regain freedom from the government to apply extreme COVID restrictions, even if it turns out to be inadequate on their own, mass vaccination is a necessity for freedom It is said to be a condition.

Epoch Times Photo
Students wait to receive the Covid-19 Pfizer vaccine on August 9, 2021 at the Kudos Arena in Sydney, Australia (Dean Lewins-Pool / Getty Images).

The pace of vaccination has skyrocketed in recent weeks, but it has soared from a low base, and we still have a long way to go from immunizing to a threshold of 70-80 percent of the eligible population. Australia is just under a quarter compared to vaccinations for two-thirds of Canada’s population.

This is why daily vaccination counts are monitored as carefully as daily COVID counts. For example, on August 21, the vaccination rate for people aged 16 and over reached 30%, with a threshold of 70-80%.

Modeling work by the Doherty Institute for Infectious Immunology, which led the National Cabinet to select these thresholds, suggests that Australia could reach the praised numbers between November 1st and 22nd of this year. increase.

AstraZeneca (AZ) vaccine coverage is rising. As a result, more Pfizer products are available. Vaccination rates have increased dramatically in recent weeks, from an average of 168,000 jabs per day in the last week of July to 262,000 per day in the week leading up to August 21st.

Overall, vaccination is far ahead of the Dougherty Institute’s modeling assumptions, and rollouts will be open to everyone from next week to the age of 16.

This is all very promising, but Australia is still in Canada’s deployment where the proportion of the fully vaccinated population has risen to a threshold of 70-80% in just 52 days from its current location. Not comparable.

At that rate, the threshold will be reached on October 12th and will definitely be slower than that.

The reason Canada was able to move so fast was that Pfizer and Moderna vaccines had been adequately supplied since around April.

There is no domestic production of vaccines, but in early 2020 we ordered a large quantity of all the vaccines under development at the time. This is the failure of the Australian Government. Instead, the Australian Government focused on domestic production of the AZ vaccine, but faced some public resistance for well-known, if not well-founded reasons.

File Photo: Pfizer-BioNTech and AstraZeneca Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Vaccine Labeled Vials Photo Illustration
Vials labeled with Pfizer-BioNTech and AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines can be seen in this illustrated photo taken March 19, 2021. (DadoRuvic / Illustration / Reuters)

It’s the water under the bridge. Pfizer’s supply has increased. Moderna will be available in late September and both supplies are expected to increase dramatically from early October. That way, we will be able to reach the 70% threshold by the end of October and 80% by mid-November, in line with the peak pace of vaccination in Canada.

But there is one thing you can do. What is done is different.

Does the Australian Government have an organization that offers large-scale, rapid deployments that require 370,000 doses per day compared to Canada’s peak?

There are risks in both supply and demand. For example, will the increase in Pfizer and Moderna supply be delayed? Is there enough capacity to deliver the jabs? And does vaccine hesitation lead to demand petaling before reaching the goal?

These are all risks that need to be managed, but the biggest risk is not the inability to reach the October or November threshold. But then the state government becomes very cautious and refuses to lift the restrictions in line with the agreed national cabinet plan.

Australia has some COVID, even with expanded vaccine coverage, as evidence from current outbreaks in New South Wales, Victoria, the Australian Capital Region, and other countries. You need to learn to live with infections, nosocomial infections, and mortality. ..

Some state prime ministers don’t seem ready to accept it, but as Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison said over the weekend, we can’t stay trapped forever.

His challenge is to guide the country from this idea of ​​zero COVID, even when it is the prime minister who continues to block the country.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

Robert curling

Economist Robert Curling is a Senior Fellow at the Independent Research Center in Sydney, Australia. He was Secretary-General of the New South Wales Treasury Department from 1998 to 2006 and held positions at the Federal Ministry of Finance, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.