Sinovac has now been recognized as an approved vaccine brand by the Australian government, which will also permit the mixing of vaccine brands, allowing these options for those who wish to travel to Australia. This is a very helpful announcement for many Australian expats living in Thailand who are vaccinated locally with the Chinese-made vaccine and perhaps an AstraZeneca booster shot.
This new decision will allow people inoculated in Thailand to travel to Australia, many of which have been encouraged by an earlier announcement of Australia's reopening to international travel but mired by not having an approved vaccine.
The Australian government declared that, as of Monday, fully vaccinated Australian citizens and permanent residents will be allowed to travel out of Australia without requiring an outwards travel exemption. The Therapeutic Goods Administration accepts two doses that are spaced at least two weeks apart of AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Moderna, and now Sinovac, or one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
They allow mixed doses as long as each of the vaccines is on the approved list, and at least one week must pass after the final injection before a person is considered fully vaccinated. The Australian government's analysis found that the Sinovac vaccine is comparable in efficacy to those already approved though they noted that it offers less protection against symptomatic infections.
The TGA has not decided yet if they would recognize the Russian Sputnik V or India's Covaxin vaccine.
The announcement included a warning by the Department of Home Affairs that Australians will have been provided with an International Covid-19 Vaccination Certificate, but those who are vaccinated abroad will need to have a foreign vaccination certificate.
Those who have medical reasons that they cannot be vaccinated can provide proof for an exemption but may have to follow quarantine requirements in the state or territory they're travelling to.
SOURCE: The Phuket News
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