covid-19 vaccine melbourne
(Image: AAP/Daniel Pockett)

Australia has organised 25 million COVID-19 vaccine booster doses, 15 million of which won’t be available until the first half of 2022. It’s almost enough to cover our population if children are included in the rollout and there’s no wastage. 

But there’s no clear schedule for when these will arrive or who will be prioritised for the first booster jab. Advice has changed, with modelling from the Doherty Institute showing that prioritising younger people for the vaccine rollout better reduces transmission after the most at-risk are protected.

Worryingly, emerging evidence shows protection from both AstraZeneca and Pfizer wanes after six months. Efficacy drops off further the less spaced-out the first and second doses are for AstraZeneca, a major concern since Prime Minister Scott Morrison recommended decreasing the time between doses from 12 weeks to eight in outbreak settings.