Tasmania cancels first-dose vaccinations of the AstraZeneca Covid jab for people under 50 after official advice changes
- Tasmania has halted first-dose injections of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine
- The decision comes after Prime Minister Scott Morrison received new advice
- Advisory group recommended Pfizer vaccine be ‘preferred’ over AstraZeneca
Tasmania has halted first-dose injections of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for people aged under 50 years, following federal health advice.
‘Those who have had their first dose will also be contacted directly,’ the government said on Friday.
The decision comes after Prime Minister Scott Morrison late on Thursday received recommendations from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation.
Tasmania has halted first-dose injections of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for people aged under 50 years, following federal health advice
The decision comes after Prime Minister Scott Morrison late on Thursday received recommendations from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation
The ATAGI recommended the Pfizer vaccine be ‘preferred’ over the AstraZeneca one in people aged under 50, who face a very rare risk of developing blood clots.
‘We understand that people will be anxious for more information,’ the government said.
‘That information will be provided via your vaccine clinic as soon as possible.’
Tasmanians aged over 50 will continue to be vaccinated with the AstraZeneca jab.
Premier Peter Gutwein, who is in the midst of a state election campaign, will on Friday join his interstate counterparts and Mr Morrision for a national cabinet meeting to discuss the national vaccine rollout.
NEW ASTRAZENECA RECOMMENDATIONS
* The use of the Pfizer vaccine is preferred over AstraZeneca in Australian adults under 50 who have not already received their first AstraZeneca dose
* Australian immunisation providers should only give a first dose of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine to adults under 50 where the benefit clearly outweighs the risk
* Australians who have had their first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine without any serious adverse events can safely be given their second dose, including those under 50
* Australians who have had blood clots associated with low platelet levels after their first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine should not be given a second dose
* Australia’s Department of Health further develop and refine resources for informed consent that clearly convey the AstraZeneca vaccine’s benefits and the risks
HOW WILL THIS AFFECT AUSTRALIA’S COVID-19 VACCINATION ROLLOUT?
* Rollout plan will be recalibrated and re-evaluated
* End of October timeline for every Australian to receive first vaccine dose in doubt
* Phase 1b – which includes younger adults with a medical condition or disability and frontline health workers among others – may be delayed
* Pfizer vaccine will be reprioritised for under 50s once phase 1a finishes
* Australia’s vaccine purchases under review
HOW OFTEN DO ASTRAZENECA-LINKED BLOOD CLOTS OCCUR?
* Four to six cases per million AstraZeneca vaccine doses
* One known Australian case found in a 44-year-old man admitted to hospital in Melbourne
* 25 per cent death rate in known cases
* More common among younger people
* Cause unknown