Norman Swan is a physician, journalist, broadcaster, and co-host of Coronacast Podcast.
American health regulators have paused the use of the Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine, following reports of rare blood clotting in six recipients. Like the AstraZeneca vaccine, Johnson & Johnson is what's known as a viral vector vaccine - where another virus is used like a taxi to deliver a bit of coronavirus to help teach the immune system. So on today's Coronacast, what are viral vector vaccines and could the rare blood-clots be a problem with them more broadly? Also on today's show: * What do the data show regarding the risks of clotting for people over the age of 50? * What can we learn from the US vaccine rollout? (We hear from special guest Anthony Fauci, who Tegan interviewed as part of an event presented by UNSW)
With all the talk of blood clots, various levels of risk and worries about possible coronavirus outbreaks over winter, it's important to remember that vaccines do save lives. And they especially help older people because they are at the most at risk of dying from COVID-19. Scientists have recently revisited the chances of dying if you're infected with coronavirus, and found an exponential growth in the death rate the older you get. So on today's Coronacast, we revisit a question from the beginning: without vaccination, how deadly can coronavirus be? Also on today's show: * A second Australian has the blood clotting syndrome post AstraZeneca vaccine * Informed consent. What are you actually agreeing to? * Why is everyone talking about "no fault compensation" in relation to vaccines?
The Federal Government has jettisoned vaccine rollout targets and the Prime Minister says there's no point creating them anyway because COVID-19 "writes its own rules". Instead, the government is "just getting on with it" in rolling out the coronavirus vaccine to the Australian population. But with few details and limited vaccine supply, it's hard to tell at the moment how the Federal Government plans to do it. However we do have AstraZeneca vaccines available and Pfizer is due to deliver many millions more eventually, so on today's Coronacast, a guess on how Australia's rocky rollout might be achieved by year's end.
A lot has happened with the coronavirus vaccine rollout over the last week. Firstly, it's been recommended that the AstraZeneca vaccine not be given to under 50 year-old due to concerns about rare blood clotting. And secondly, there's been significant debate about why the rollout has been taking longer than anyone expected. So on today's Coronacast, it's time to take a rollout reset. Let's look through exactly what's happened over the last week and find out what it all means.
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2 days, 18 hours
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