/ 08 February 2023

Fifth time’s a charm


Aussies aged over 18yo will have access to an additional COVID jab from 20 February. To date, a 5th shot has been available to the severely immunocompromised only, while those under 30yo were unable to get a 4th dose. The federal government was waiting on advice from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation about the next steps, and that’s now been provided and accepted. The top line is people aged over 18yo who have not had a COVID vaccine or positive case in the last 6 months are eligible for their next shot. A straight-up-and-down COVID-19 booster is good, but the experts say an Omicron-specific mRNA vaccine is better. Health Minister Mark Butler says there are 4 million of those available, and 10 million more are set to arrive. Enthusiasm for a 4th dose was way below the original course + a booster – 44% of those eligible went back the 4th time.

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