And AZ can still do the job. Three weeks after even one dose, protection gained against most variants of the virus is sufficient to prevent you having a serious infection that would require hospitalisation. A second dose will provide you with protection from serious consequences from infection with the delta strain. Protection from delta with the Pfizer vaccine also requires two doses.
But what about those scary side effects? About one person among 250,000 people vaccinated with the AZ vaccine will develop a problem wherein they develop blood clots in blood vessels. Most people with this complication recover spontaneously. About one in a million has died from the complication.
The good news is that we now understand the cause of the problem and have very effective treatments for the condition. That, unfortunately, has received little publicity. And, by the way, the risk of thrombosis associated with an actual COVID infection is about 39 per million.
In an outbreak like the one we are currently experiencing in Sydney, you are far more likely to die from a COVID infection than from an AstraZenenca vaccination.
While we could debate the decision of the government’s advisory committee to recommend AZ vaccination for only people aged 60 and over, we would be foolish to sit back and wait for Pfizer to be available to us. The anticipated supply of adequate volumes of the Pfizer vaccine is far from certain.
I will have my second AstraZeneca shot next week and I am looking forward to the protection it will give me from potentially deadly coronaviruses in circulation.
If you are one of the many who were set to be vaccinated with AstraZeneca but cancelled for fear of side effects, reconsider urgently. Protect yourselves now. You will be helping to develop an Australia that is COVID-proof.
We are living with a pandemic where the enemy is winning despite the availability of an effective neutraliser. Let the facts, not the scaremongering, determine your decision-making.