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Covid-19 Australia: CSIRO health director says AstraZeneca more effective than Pfizer

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‘You dice with your own life’: Doctor shares heartfelt plea for Australians persevering in getting Covid vaccine after UK studies confirm AZ is BETTER at preventing deaths and lasts longer than Pfizer

  • CSIRO health director urged Australians to consider AstraZeneca over Pfizer
  • dr. Rob Grenfell said UK study showed vaccine more effective than competitor
  • “It performed better in reducing hospitalizations and deaths,” said Dr. Grenfell










CSIRO’s health director has urged Australians to strongly consider getting the AstraZeneca vaccine after a new study found it to be more effective than Pfizer.

dr. Rob Grenfell said the vaccine had proven to last longer and provide better protection than its competitor based on the latest UK statistics.

“The UK has been the testing ground for the vaccine schedule we have here in Australia, so they’ve both been using Pfizer and AstraZeneca,” he said on Channel Nine’s Today Show on Friday.

“Remarkably, AstraZeneca was better. It even outperformed in reducing hospitalizations and deaths. And more importantly, the immunity developed by the AstraZeneca appears to be longer than the Pfizer.’

CSIRO’s health director has urged Australians to strongly consider getting the AstraZeneca vaccine after a new study found it to be more effective than Pfizer

dr.  Rob Grenfell said the vaccine had proven to last longer and provide better protection than its competitor based on the latest UK statistics

dr. Rob Grenfell said the vaccine had proven to last longer and provide better protection than its competitor based on the latest UK statistics

Pfizer and AstraZeneca are the two most readily available vaccines in the UK.

The country has ordered 135 million doses of Pfizer and 100 million doses of AstraZeneca.

Nearly 89 per cent of people aged 16 and over have had their first shot, while more than 79 per cent have been fully vaccinated in the UK.

Vaccination rates surpass Australia by just 7.2 million – or 35 percent – of double-vaccinated residents.

Today Show host Allison Langdon partly blamed the vaccine’s hesitancy on the slow rollout, saying residents still chose to wait for the Pfizer vaccine rather than AstraZeneca.

“You still have a problem with vaccine restraint when it comes to AstraZeneca,” she said. “I mean, everyone’s waiting for the Pfizer.”

dr. Grenfell said residents risked their lives by delaying the life-saving shots.

“You’re playing with your own life here,” Dr. Grenfell said. ‘Get a vaccine as soon as possible. There is a lot of AstraZeneca in the system.

“For all those 50-year-olds and up who say, ‘I’m going to wait for the Pfizer,’ you’re basically waiting for a vaccine that isn’t as good for you, in your age group, as the AstraZeneca,” he said.

Australians over 60 have been warned they will be pushed to the back of the line if they opt out of the AstraZeneca and opt for Pfizer instead.

There are currently three million locally produced doses of AstraZeneca available to residents over the age of 60. If they wait for Pfizer, they risk waiting until Christmas to get the shot.

Vaccination rate surpasses Australia by just 7.2 million - or 35 percent - of residents who have received a double shot

Vaccination rate surpasses Australia with just 7.2 million – or 35 percent – of residents who have had a double sting

Today Show host Allison Langdon blamed the vaccine's hesitancy in part on the slow rollout, saying residents still chose to wait for the Pfizer vaccine rather than AstraZeneca.

Today Show host Allison Langdon blamed the vaccine’s hesitancy in part on the slow rollout, saying residents still chose to wait for the Pfizer vaccine rather than AstraZeneca.

The federal government plans to send a letter to the 586,713 people between the ages of 60 and 69 who have not yet been vaccinated.

It will warn the group that ‘people over 60 have a greatly increased risk of serious illness with Covid-19 and should be vaccinated as soon as possible’.

“Recent outbreaks of the new, more contagious strains of the Covid-19 virus, with some tragic deaths in Sydney, make it all the more important that Australians over 60 get vaccinated now,” the letter said.

“We’ve expanded the number of community pharmacies dispensing the highly effective AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine across the country… This will give you, your family and your loved ones more options to get vaccinated.”

dr. Grenfell said Australians should get their hands on every vaccine available, as both the Pfizer and AstraZeneca were incredibly effective.

“Both vaccines are really, really effective at preventing you from being hospitalized or dying from the Delta strain,” said Dr. Grenfell.

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