(Image: AP/Maya Alleruzzo)

Early data out of Israel, which has become a real-life vaccine trial for the rest of the planet, appears far more positive than the Australian media has bothered to report. Strange, since the Israel experience will inform the world on how quickly it will be able to deal with COVID-19.

The pace of vaccinations in Israel is, in relative terms, staggering. In just five weeks, 48% of the population have had their first shot, and 16% have had their second. (The next best is the UAE, which has vaccinated 25% of its residents. The UK is at 11% and the US at 7%.)

Australia, meanwhile, hopes to begin vaccinations in late February after the Therapeutic Goods Administration approved the Pfizer vaccine earlier this week.