An Albury-based virologist is calling for clarity and calm when it comes to the Australian roll-out of the COVID vaccine.
Charles Sturt University lecturer Louise Pemberton said while she wanted to reassure the Border community that the vaccines chosen by the Australian government were safe, the roll-out messaging needed to be "spot on" to achieve herd immunity.
"I think it is going to play out quite well," Dr Pemberton told The Border Mail.
"I don't think there is any need for anyone to be worrying about the safety of the vaccines that have been chosen.
"The Astra Zeneca one - which is the one the government has obtained the most doses of - is displaying at the moment around 62 per cent efficacy, which is good, compared with other vaccines for other viruses it measures up to those.
"But I think where the confusion is coming is that there are other vaccines that are displaying higher efficacy."
Dr Pemberton said the Astra Zeneca vaccine "a good vaccine" but there needed to be a large number of people get the jab for it to be effective for the population.
IN OTHER NEWS:
"Because it is only 62 per cent effective, there needs to be a really big push to get as many people buying into getting vaccinated as possible so we can increase the chances of eventually getting herd immunity with the addition of the other vaccines as well," she said.
"You would want to get a huge buy in from the public for it to be effective, almost 100 per cent, which is not feasible.
"The government messaging must be spot on when they roll out the advertising campaign to get as much of the population to opt in for vaccination.
"With the other two vaccines the efficacy is much higher, 95 per cent; this is why people are questioning why we have not procured more doses of these.
"Whatever campaign that is brought out by the government, it really needs to push that they are safe because there underlying nervousness that because its been developed within 10 months that they aren't safe which is not true."
Dr Pemberton said while she could only speak for herself and her family, she would encourage everyone to ask questions of their GP before opting-in.