COVID-19 vaccine procurement review says rapid access to vaccines and treatments key to ongoing protection of Australians

27 September 2022: Medicines Australia welcomes the independent review of Australia’s COVID-19 vaccine and treatment procurements by Professor Jane Halton AO PSM – a highly respected former senior public official, chair of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and co-chair of the COVAX initiative.

The review has made eight recommendations that will inform the future purchasing and procurement of COVID-19 vaccines and treatments.

CEO of Medicines Australia, Elizabeth de Somer, says the next phase of the pandemic will bring about its own set of challenges and the medicines industry will continue to rapidly deliver vaccines and treatments to Australians.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us the importance of having fast access to innovative vaccines and treatments,” Ms de Somer said.

“Australia now has a high vaccination rate against COVID-19, but we must not drop our guard. Maximum vaccinations and treatments will help protect the vulnerable, reduce the strain on our hospitals, lower mortality rates and support the recovery of our economy.

“Today’s report by Professor Halton highlights the importance of clear advisory structures, contemporary policy settings and evidence-based decision making to support effective management in an emergency.

“Medicines Australia and our members remain steadfast to continue our partnership with Government, working together with supply chain, clinicians, pharmacists, and patients to ensure Australia’s health system is fit-for-purpose and accelerates access to innovative medicines, vaccines and treatments that save and change lives.  

“Now is an ideal time to implement the critical bold reforms that are urgently needed to ensure our systems are not only ready for the next health crisis, but ready for the next breakthrough innovation that is on the cusp of discovery.

“The upcoming review of Australia’s Health Technology Assessment (HTA) provides a perfect opportunity to bring in a new era of healthcare and to introduce streamlined ways to support fast access to innovative treatments such as the COVID-19 vaccine,” Ms de Somer said.


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