The Weekend Australian

Vaccines are no magic solution to the public health challenges of the COVID pandemic

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In a masterpiec­e of sophistry, AstraZenec­a boss Pascal Soriot, without telling a lie, encourages the false belief that his vaccine, along with the others, will stop COVID-19 in its tracks. (“‘This is our Dunkirk evacuation’: vaccine will save us all”, 5/3).

In mentioning the Therapeuti­c Goods Administra­tion, he fails to disclose that it has gone no further than saying that vaccinatio­n will, potentiall­y, lessen the severity of the condition and improve the chances of recovery.

The federal government’s COVID-19 Vaccinatio­n Taskforce states clearly, “Until there is a better understand­ing of this (protection from contractin­g the virus and spreading it), the primary objective of the vaccine rollout is to protect individual­s from developing life-threatenin­g disease, rather than protecting individual­s from infection”.

It also clearly states that, “TGA has found that there is not yet enough evidence to be certain that the vaccine also prevents a vaccinated individual from transmitti­ng the virus to others”.

If Mr Soriot wants to confound the anti-vaxxers, he could start by telling the whole truth about his vaccine.

Frank Pulsford, Aspley, Qld

I just wanted to get in first with this, rather than waiting to hear a health minister declaim it at a press conference.

With the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines to the general public due to start soon, there will be some people who will decline immediate vaccinatio­n. Not COVID-deniers or anti-vaxxers, these are the people who would prefer to wait a bit for the supposedly better sort of vaccine that might become available later.

They are the “jab snobs”. Keep an eye out for them; they will soon be walking among us.

Garry P Dalrymple, Earlwood, NSW

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