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Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 1:47 am
by Martin_B
From the ABC it's 20 million Pfizer doses and 3.8 million AstraZeneca doses being imported and 50 million AstraZeneca doses being made in Melbourne. The Pfizer vaccine is going to front-line workers and the elderly and AstraZeneca to the general population.

The Group 1 (priority) are only ~700,000, so probably Group 2 (elderly, vulnerable, underlying health issues = ~6.2 million) will also get the Pfizer (that's not entirely clear). Group 3 (healthy adults 50-70, Aboriginals adults, etc = 6.6 million), Group 4 (all other adults = 6.6 million) and Group 5 (children = 5.7 million, if recommended) will be the AstraZeneca.

However, if you live in rural Australia you can only get the AstraZeneca due to the problems with distributing Pfizer to remote locations.

The groups above add up to 25.8 million, which is pretty much the entire population, but we only need 51.6 million doses, and have 73.8 million planned (plus orders for a couple of other vaccines, if they get approval) so we, like the UK, have over-bought.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 3:24 am
by Herainestold
Seems like a good plan. I understand the first jabs are Pfizer , I was wondering how many of the 20 million doses they expect to receive in the next couple of months, given the shortages of Pfizer vaccine coming out of Europe.
Also looks good that they expect to be making a million AZ doses per week in March. That is impressive.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 10:32 am
by Chris Preston
No more than 10 million, but likely to be less than that before May. The first shipment was 142,000 doses and will be used in 3 weeks or so.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 3:08 pm
by Herainestold
Chris Preston wrote:
Mon Feb 22, 2021 10:32 am
No more than 10 million, but likely to be less than that before May. The first shipment was 142,000 doses and will be used in 3 weeks or so.
Thanks Chris. There seems to be shortages of Pfizer vaccine everywhere, I think because it is in such high demand. Pfizer must be making money hand over fist.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Tue Feb 23, 2021 2:01 am
by Martin_B
Herainestold wrote:
Mon Feb 22, 2021 3:08 pm
Chris Preston wrote:
Mon Feb 22, 2021 10:32 am
No more than 10 million, but likely to be less than that before May. The first shipment was 142,000 doses and will be used in 3 weeks or so.
Thanks Chris. There seems to be shortages of Pfizer vaccine everywhere, I think because it is in such high demand. Pfizer must be making money hand over fist.
Not really. Both they and AstraZeneca are selling the vaccine effectively at cost. Certainly the Pfizer stock price is barely unchanged since a year ago. (They did have a spike in Dec 2020, which was when the vaccine was getting approved.) The AstraZeneca share price has dropped ~10% in the last couple of months; probably due to the production and efficacy issues they've had.

I think if either company was seen to be profiteering from this they'd be crucified in the press, but both companies (and anyone else making a vaccine) are getting enormous amounts of free PR which will be useful in the future.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Tue Feb 23, 2021 4:59 am
by Herainestold
Martin_B wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 2:01 am
Herainestold wrote:
Mon Feb 22, 2021 3:08 pm
Chris Preston wrote:
Mon Feb 22, 2021 10:32 am
No more than 10 million, but likely to be less than that before May. The first shipment was 142,000 doses and will be used in 3 weeks or so.
Thanks Chris. There seems to be shortages of Pfizer vaccine everywhere, I think because it is in such high demand. Pfizer must be making money hand over fist.
Not really. Both they and AstraZeneca are selling the vaccine effectively at cost. Certainly the Pfizer stock price is barely unchanged since a year ago. (They did have a spike in Dec 2020, which was when the vaccine was getting approved.) The AstraZeneca share price has dropped ~10% in the last couple of months; probably due to the production and efficacy issues they've had.

I think if either company was seen to be profiteering from this they'd be crucified in the press, but both companies (and anyone else making a vaccine) are getting enormous amounts of free PR which will be useful in the future.
I knew that about AZ but was not aware that Pfizer was selling at cost. Moderna's stock price is up 75% this year, so maybe they are making money off this vaccine.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Tue Feb 23, 2021 5:47 am
by Martin_B
I think that Moderna's stock rise is probably due to them being a relatively small player until Covid came along, although from what I've seen they are charging about twice the price that Pfizer is ($32-$37/dose vs $20/dose). This might mean that Moderna is making profit, or that they have higher manufacturing costs than Pfizer (Pfizer being a much bigger player, I'd expect them to have lower overheads per dose).

I've seen widely varying costs for AstraZeneca (one article said $25-$37/dose, one said $3-$4/dose). The Johnson & Johnson and Sputnik vaccines appear to be ~$10/dose, while the Sinovac vaccine is closer to Moderna's cost (somewhere from $30-$60/dose).

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Tue Feb 23, 2021 5:16 pm
by jdc
This: https://www.bmj.com/content/372/bmj.n281 is worth a read. Plenty of detail on who's paying what for which vaccine and why.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Tue Feb 23, 2021 5:44 pm
by Herainestold
jdc wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 5:16 pm
This: https://www.bmj.com/content/372/bmj.n281 is worth a read. Plenty of detail on who's paying what for which vaccine and why.
Very interesting.
AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson have committed to not making a profit from the pandemic, while Moderna and Pfizer did not. AstraZeneca reserved the right, however, to declare the pandemic phase over and take profits from later vaccine sales.
Of course the companies profit by governments comitting to huge purchases of vaccines. I believe the UK has comitted to enough doses to fully vaccinate every person at least twice. There are also direct subsidies like the Warp Speed initiative in America. Also indirect subsidies in the form of
tax breaks, etc. Big Pharma will make Big Money from this pandemic when all is said and done.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Wed Feb 24, 2021 11:07 am
by Squeak
My Little brother (an emergency doctor) has had his first jab today, as have a couple of nurse friends. It's surprisingly exciting to hear that people who I know are getting it, not just strangers on the news. It makes it feel more real, somehow.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Thu Mar 04, 2021 3:45 pm
by shpalman
I see on the Guardian live blog that Italy blocked the export of 250,000 doses of AstraZeneca which supposed to go to Australia.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Fri Mar 05, 2021 1:34 am
by Herainestold
shpalman wrote:
Thu Mar 04, 2021 3:45 pm
I see on the Guardian live blog that Italy blocked the export of 250,000 doses of AstraZeneca which supposed to go to Australia.
Maybe you can get one that was intended for Oz.

When is the Australian factory going to start churning out AZ doses? News reports in Feb said March, but I presume it will be late March.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Fri Mar 05, 2021 1:49 am
by Martin_B
Herainestold wrote:
Fri Mar 05, 2021 1:34 am
shpalman wrote:
Thu Mar 04, 2021 3:45 pm
I see on the Guardian live blog that Italy blocked the export of 250,000 doses of AstraZeneca which supposed to go to Australia.
Maybe you can get one that was intended for Oz.

When is the Australian factory going to start churning out AZ doses? News reports in Feb said March, but I presume it will be late March.
Certainly later this month (baring technical difficulties, such as those experienced in the Netherlands). But we've got ~300,000 AZ doses already (from reports) and even more Pfizer doses, so not getting this shipment won't damage our roll out too much. Hope Italy pay us for them, though - it's theft otherwise. You used to get sent to Australia for that sort of thing!

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Fri Mar 05, 2021 4:13 pm
by Herainestold
Are any other vaccines being evaluated in Oz? I googled and didn't find anything definitive.
America has three, Pfizer, Moderna and J&J. No AZ as of yet.
It is the only country that has approved J&J.
Maybe Australia doesn't need more, they can get everybody vaxed with Pfizer and AZ.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Sat Mar 06, 2021 5:09 am
by Martin_B
University of Queensland had a vaccine which was being trialled (early stages) but had an unfortunate side-effect of making you test positive for HIV (it didn't give you HIV, but the vaccine was based on the HI virus, I think). I think the trial was stopped before any results could be determined as to whether it might have worked.

I have rumours of other vaccines being developed over here, but I suspect that unless they were very good, very cheap, or very stable and therefore suitable for places like Africa, any new vaccine might have missed the boat.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Sat Mar 06, 2021 5:43 am
by Herainestold
Martin_B wrote:
Sat Mar 06, 2021 5:09 am
University of Queensland had a vaccine which was being trialled (early stages) but had an unfortunate side-effect of making you test positive for HIV (it didn't give you HIV, but the vaccine was based on the HI virus, I think). I think the trial was stopped before any results could be determined as to whether it might have worked.

I have rumours of other vaccines being developed over here, but I suspect that unless they were very good, very cheap, or very stable and therefore suitable for places like Africa, any new vaccine might have missed the boat.
Not developing a new vax, but is Australia considering one of the others, J&J ,Novavax, etc?
I didn't see anything about that when I looked, just curious.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Sat Mar 06, 2021 7:22 am
by Martin_B
The DoH website only mentions the Pfizer and AZ vaccines, but then they are the two which have been approved, and we will have enough doses for everyone to receive both shots.

Part of the Novovax clinical trials were conducted in Australia, so that may become approved over here.

Of the other Australian vaccine candidates I've been able to find anything about:

- The U of Q vaccine was doing well before being cancelled.
- The Flinders University/Vaxine candidate has suffered from a lack of funding (it was hoping to pick up the funding which U of Q hadn't spent, but that didn't happen); it's reported to have received funding for trials in Pakistan!
- The Clover Bio/Dynavax candidate is raising funds for Phase 2/3 trials.

So as I said before, there are other candidates still going through trials; but I suspect that finding the funding for trials might be difficult when most governments at the moment will be directing all their attention on producing/procuring one of the main vaccines or half-dozen which are there or there-abouts (J&J, Novovax, Sinopharm, etc).

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Sat Mar 06, 2021 2:23 pm
by shpalman
Martin_B wrote:
Fri Mar 05, 2021 1:49 am
Herainestold wrote:
Fri Mar 05, 2021 1:34 am
shpalman wrote:
Thu Mar 04, 2021 3:45 pm
I see on the Guardian live blog that Italy blocked the export of 250,000 doses of AstraZeneca which supposed to go to Australia.
Maybe you can get one that was intended for Oz.

When is the Australian factory going to start churning out AZ doses? News reports in Feb said March, but I presume it will be late March.
Certainly later this month (baring technical difficulties, such as those experienced in the Netherlands). But we've got ~300,000 AZ doses already (from reports) and even more Pfizer doses, so not getting this shipment won't damage our roll out too much. Hope Italy pay us for them, though - it's theft otherwise. You used to get sent to Australia for that sort of thing!
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Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Wed Mar 31, 2021 11:32 pm
by Squeak
The plan was to administer 4 million vaccines by the end of March. We actually managed to administer about 600k. Reaching 15% of your target isn't bad, right?
:/

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Thu Apr 01, 2021 12:55 am
by Martin_B
Squeak wrote:
Wed Mar 31, 2021 11:32 pm
The plan was to administer 4 million vaccines by the end of March. We actually managed to administer about 600k. Reaching 15% of your target isn't bad, right?
:/
Scotty from marketing will spin it as a positive.

Another way of looking at it is that instead of vaccinating 16% of the population in a month, we've managed just over 2% (with a single dose). So we'll achieve full vaccination in about 2028 at this rate. :roll:

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Thu Apr 08, 2021 5:09 pm
by shpalman

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Thu Apr 08, 2021 5:44 pm
by Herainestold
shpalman wrote:
Thu Apr 08, 2021 5:09 pm
you didn't not get 700,000 from the UK
I thought they were making their own AZ.

https://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/healt ... 0ec7155db5

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Thu Apr 08, 2021 6:24 pm
by Fishnut
Aus is stopping AZ vaccine for under-50s

Has any other medicine ever had such a low bar for withdrawal?

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Thu Apr 08, 2021 6:33 pm
by shpalman
The risk-benefit calculation for the AstraZeneca vaccine is rather different in Australia where there's a much lower risk from covid itself.

Re: Vaccine roll out in Australia

Posted: Thu Apr 08, 2021 7:33 pm
by Herainestold
shpalman wrote:
Thu Apr 08, 2021 6:33 pm
The risk-benefit calculation for the AstraZeneca vaccine is rather different in Australia where there's a much lower risk from covid itself.
Do they have enough doses of Pfizer to make up? At least they have the luxury of time, they can wait to vaccinate.