That left the federal government with about 1.57 million doses, enough to immunise about 785,000 people.
However, not all these doses can be released because both vaccines require a second dose. To ensure that a second dose is available, Mr Hunt said the Commonwealth “holds a second dose for every dose that goes out”, further restricting available supply.
CSL’s Broadmeadows factory has been producing doses of AstraZeneca’s vaccine, but these have to wait for regulatory approval before they can be distributed. The Therapeutic Goods Administration approved 832,000 doses last week, with another 2.5 million still waiting for approval.
The federal government is operating some arms of the rollout, but much has been left to the states. It remains unclear how many vaccines have been delivered to the states versus how many jabs they have given.
Queensland had received 106,000 doses as of March 29, and had administered 59,000. Another 65,000 were due to arrive in the state this week.
By March 31, NSW had received 190,610 and had administered 96,273. However, the NSW government insists distribution delays meant just 119,170 doses had actually arrived on time over the past five weeks.
Victoria says it has administered 100,000 doses out of 177,000 allocated to it.
The Victorian government would not say how many have actually arrived from the federal government.
“Clearly, the issue is about enough supply. If we can improve the supply mechanism and supply chain then facilities like this will be able to roll out vaccinations to the general public sooner than later,” Victorian parliamentary secretary for Health Steve McGhie said on Thursday.
On March 24, Mr Hunt said he expected 3.3 million doses to be delivered over the next 3½ weeks, with about 500,000 distributed each week.
“As new shipments of Pfizer and onshore manufactured AstraZeneca are made available, they will be provided across Australia to vaccinate the population in-line with the rollout plan,” the government spokeswoman said on Thursday.
Liam is The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald’s science reporter