Wednesday, 4 August 2021
Questions without Notice
[by video link] My question is to the Minister representing the Minister for Health and Aged Care, Senator Colbeck. Can the minister confirm that less than 15 per cent of Australians aged 15 and over have been fully vaccinated in south-west Sydney, which is one of the lowest vaccination rates in New South Wales?
[by video link] The vaccination rollout continues to gather pace. As of yesterday, over 12 million doses of vaccine had been administered across the country. We continue to work collaboratively with the states to provide more opportunities for more Australians to access the vaccine, and we continue to grow the number of—
I have previously ruled that specific questions that are very factual will be interpreted very tightly when it comes to direct relevance. You've reminded the minister of the question. I notice he has been speaking for just over 30 seconds. I will listen carefully to him turning to the specific nature of the question.
We continue to provide opportunities for Australians to access the vaccine and we continue to increase the number of outlets available to Australians to access the vaccine.
I have been reluctant, in my time in this role, to do what happens in the other place—to call ministers' attention to the specific nature of a question without a point of order being raised. I don't want to have to start making that habit. I think it interrupts the free flow of debate in the chamber. But, Minister, I am going to ask you to turn to the specific nature of what was a specifically worded question rather than address the general terms of the vaccination policy.
In New South Wales, as of 3 pm yesterday, over 42 per cent of the New South Wales population eligible for vaccination had received their first dose and over 20 per cent were fully vaccinated. I don't have the specific details of a particular area of Sydney with me. Over the last seven days, we have administered over 450,000 doses in New South Wales. As at 3 August, 4,139,773 doses had been administered in New South Wales. As I've said a number of times, we continue to grow the pace of the vaccine rollout. We continue to grow the number of outlets available to Australians to access the vaccine, through a number of various different types of outlet. (Time expired)
Again, I don't have specific details of a particular local government area with me but, to assist the chamber, as at 11:59 on 3 August, there have been 2.387 million doses administered in Queensland. Over 38 per cent of the Queensland population eligible for vaccination have received their first dose and 19 per cent are fully vaccinated. We continue to work closely with the Queensland government to provide both vaccines and support for Queensland's vaccination program. This week, ending 8 August, the Commonwealth will provide Queensland with just under 80,000 doses of Pfizer vaccine and there will be also 49,600 doses of AstraZeneca, and over 47,000 doses of Pfizer vaccine— (Time expired)
Clearly, the government is responsible for the vaccine rollout; therefore, it takes responsibility for the vaccinations that have occurred around Australia. But, as I have said a number of times to the chamber and as the government has said on a number of occasions, as the supply of vaccine has increased so have we increased the capacity and the availability of vaccine for the Australian people. We have continued to grow the number of vaccines supplied to Australians over recent weeks. In fact, the last two million vaccines to be administered have taken less than six days per million. So the rate of the rollout continues to grow, the number of outlets available for Australians to access a vaccine continues to grow, and we continue to have the objective of making a vaccine available to all Australians who want one by the end of this year.