It is anticipated that the 1a group will be given the Pfizer vaccine, with the balance of the population being given the Oxford/Astra Zeneca vaccine. TGA approval is only active for the Pfizer vaccine at present, but the Oxford vaccine is expected to receive approval in the near future. However, the situation is fluid with increased orders now in place for the Pfizer vaccine and other vaccines coming on line. Mutations in the virus may also change the profile and nature of the chosen vaccines throughout 2021.
We are seeing a variety of figures regarding the effectiveness of these vaccines in the press, which can be misleading as they often measure different things. The two most important indicators are whether a vaccine reduces spread and whether it greatly reduces death or serious disease needing hospital care. At present the only vaccine that may reduce spread is the Oxford/AZ vaccine, while all approved vaccines appear to be very effective in reducing death and serious disease. On that basis both the Pfizer and Oxford vaccines have been widely approved overseas. Any overall advantage of one over another is unclear with immediate effectiveness, ease of administration and distribution, and the length of the effect all under consideration.