Australia’s health department was urged by the government’s vaccine advisory group to order as many Covid-19 vaccines as possible from different sources after a meeting in August last year.
The health department secretary, Prof Brendan Murphy, said on Friday that the government’s procurement strategy was based on advice from the Science and Industry Technical Advisory Group – a group he chairs – as he sought to deflect criticism of the troubled vaccine rollout.
The comments disgruntled some members of Sitag. Multiple sources have told Guardian Australia that the group was asked to provide feedback on a procurement strategy that had already been prepared by the department after its negotiations with pharmaceutical companies.
Read the full report from Sarah Martin and Katharine Murphy below:
European, British and US diplomats have met up to three times in Canberra to discuss how to encourage Australia to consider stronger cuts to its greenhouse gas emissions.
Guardian Australia can reveal that diplomats from like-minded countries have been talking about how they could engage in dialogue with Australia, aimed at lifting its level of climate ambition before a crucial international conference in November.
In addition to pursuing engagement with the Australian government, possible options include outreach to business associations and farming groups.
The latest meeting, held last Thursday, brought together the ambassadors, high commissioners or deputy heads of mission of the UK, the US, the EU, Denmark, France, Italy, Germany, Canada, Sweden and Switzerland.
You can read the full, exclusive report below:
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Major aged care providers have warned that vaccination rates for their home care staff remain extraordinarily low, just days after the government conceded it still has no specific plan for vaccinating the workforce.
About 150,000 aged care workers provide care to about 1 million older Australians in their own homes across the country, but the government revealed on Friday it still has no dedicated plan for vaccinating home care staff and has given the issue little focus.
It has not extended the vaccine mandate for residential workers to home care workers, despite warnings weeks ago that it was an “obvious blind spot” in the rollout.
Now, at least two major providers are urging the government to treat the issue with greater urgency.
You can read the full report below:
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