Advance purchase agreements: what does that mean?

The Australian Government has made a number of advance purchase agreements in order to ensure that Australians have access to COVID-19 vaccines once they are proven to be safe and effective.

The following document from the European Commission, outlines what an advance purchase agreement entails and the negotiation process behind it:

Questions and Answers: Coronavirus and the EU Vaccines Strategy

 


December CVU tickets are now available for purchase

Tickets are now available for our first virtual Clinical Vaccinology Update (CVU). This will be an all-day event held on December 7 2020.

We are excited to welcome both local and international presenters covering a wide range of immunisation topics.

To view a draft program of the day's events, and for ticketing information, please follow the link below:

Clinical Vaccinology Update: December 7 2020


Who pays compensation if a COVID-19 vaccine has rare side-effects? Here's the little we know about Australia's new deal

In the recent federal budget, the Australian Government revealed it would provide indemnity against liability for both the AstraZeneca Oxford  and the University of Queensland COVID-19 vaccine candidates. Should either vaccine be approved, and if rare side-effects occur, the government will be responsible for providing compensation. Vaccine compensation schemes currently exist in many countries however, at present Australia is not one of them.

The following article, published in The Conversation, outlines what is known about the proposed indemnity deal and what it means for Australians.

To read the article in full follow the link below:

The Conversation: Who pays compensation if a COVID-19 vaccine has rare side-effects? Here's the little we know about Australia's new deal


New immunisation reference page: The Royal Children's Hospital COVID-19 follow-up clinic

Our new reference page provides details on the COVID-19 follow-up clinic at The Royal Children's Hospital, which aims to provide support, acute care and long-term follow-up to COVID-19 positive children and their families. For further information, including how to refer children to the service, please follow the link below:

MVEC: The Royal Children's Hospital COVID-19 follow-up clinic 


The New York Times: She hunts viral rumors about real viruses

In the following article by the New York Times, Anthropologist and Director of the Vaccine Confidence Project, Professor Heidi Larson, suggests that vaccine hesitancy is not a byproduct of misinformation, but represents a problem with trust. Heidi's research focuses on what factors undermine vaccine acceptance and immunisation uptake across the globe. She suggests that in order to build trust, health care providers need to focus communication strategies on answering the questions being asked and not just providing scientific information and public health recommendations.

Read the article in full below:

The New York Times: She hunts viral rumors about real viruses

Heidi was recently a special guest on our COVID-19 Road to a vaccine podcast series. To listen to Heidi's episode follow the below link to our podcast page:

COVID19 Road to a vaccine


Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) COVID-19 Working Group

The role of the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) is to provide independent advice to the Minister for Health on all matters relating to immunisation in Australia. In September 2020 ATAGI convened a new SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) working group. The key objectives of this group are to provide advice on COVID-19 immunisation programs and policies, to improve confidence in COVID-19 vaccines and to ensure equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines as they become available in Australia.

To learn more, please see below:

Australian Government Department of Health: Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) COVID-19 Working Group


Save the date for our first virtual Clinical Vaccinology Update!

MVEC is excited to announce that our first virtual Clinical Vaccinology Update (CVU) will be held on December 7, 2020.

Program details and ticketing information will be announced shortly. 


EMA starts first rolling review of a COVID-19 vaccine in the EU

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has begun a "rolling review" of the AstraZeneca Oxford SARS-CoV-2 vaccine candidate. Normal regulatory processes for medicines involve the submission of all safety and efficacy data to the Agency at the completion of clinical trials. A "rolling review" means that the Agency can begin evaluating data as it becomes available. By employing this method of approval, the regulation process will maintain its usual quality and safety standards, but be shorter than the usual process due to the time gained by reviewing data as it becomes available. 

To learn more please read below:

EMA starts first rolling review of a COVID-19 vaccine in the EU


Frontiers in Immunology: Progress and Pitfalls in the Quest for Effective SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Vaccines

With over 200 COVID-19 vaccine candidates currently in pre-clinical and clinical trials, the following article reviews what we know about the immune response to SARS-CoV-2 infection and explores the various vaccine platforms being utilised to develop a safe and effective vaccine. Potential issues including adverse effects and the need for mass production are also discussed, as well as the challenges of rapid and equitable vaccine delivery.  

Read the article in full here: 

Frontiers in Immunology: Progress and Pitfalls in the Quest for Effective SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Vaccines


COVID19 Road to a vaccine episode 15: Professor Lynn Gillam

In episode 15, our host, Associate Professor Nigel Crawford, speaks to Professor Lynn Gillam. Lynn is a clinical ethicist who trained in philosophy and bioethics. She is a Professor in the Centre for Health Equity, in the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health at the University of Melbourne; and the Academic Director of The Children’s Bioethics Centre at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne, Australia. The Children’s Bioethics Centre provides support including ethical decision making for clinicians in relation to patient care issues. Nigel and Lynn will discuss some of the ethical issues raised in the setting of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, utilising a framework of points raised by Dr John Lantos from the Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, USA, at the recent Bioethics E-Conference hosted by The Children’s Bioethics Centre:

  • The importance of realising that not doing something or not conducting research is a decision in itself
  • The notion of “too fast can’t be safe” – some steps need to take the time they have always taken, some things can be done more quickly, recognising that if you do nothing, you are allowing harm to happen
  • The role of ethical boards and the way vaccines are developed, i.e. the use of younger, healthier participants in research, not the individuals who are getting the worst disease
  • The involvement of children and elderly people in clinical trials and the key differences in the ethical considerations of this
  • Global equity of access to SARS-CoV-2 vaccines when they become available, who gets them first and how should these decisions be made?
  • The role of Citizens’ Juries in deciding who has priority of access to vaccines in a pandemic situation
  • Mandatory vaccination
  • The use of foetal embryonic cell lines in vaccine development

Links

Listen to the episode here:

Spreaker - Apple - Spotify