It came on the same day that NSW reported a further five people had died from COVID-19, taking the death tally in the current outbreak to 21 from a total of 4319 cases.
The rate of deaths linked to AstraZeneca is one in every one million doses, with almost seven million doses administered. In the Sydney outbreak, the death rate from COVID-19 is just over one in every 200 cases.
To date more than 13 million doses of both the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines have been administered across the country. More than 8.7 million people have had one dose, while 4.3 million are now fully immunised.
Operation COVID Shield coordinator Lieutenant General John Frewen told Nine’s Today show that supplies of both Pfizer and Moderna would ramp up by the end of September.
“By late September, early October, I think we will have the ability to offer far greater choice and to bring in additional cohorts more freely,” he said on Thursday morning.
The previous day, General Frewen said he was aiming to open the program up to people aged 30 and over by the end of August, and then expand to include everyone aged 16 and over by the end of September.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian revealed the state would receive 183,000 additional doses of Pfizer, in part to help replace doses redirected from regions now battling COVID infections.
Labor’s health spokesman Mark Butler said the opposition supported more doses being given to areas of greatest need, but the country still needed more.
“The problem is there’s simply not enough vaccine in Australia for the needs we have, whether it’s in Greater Sydney, in the Hunter Valley, or across the rest of our country,” he said on Thursday afternoon.