Australian Government Considering Removing JobKeeper From People Who Refuse Covid-19 Vaccine
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The Australian government is considering introducing a measure that could kick people off subsidies like JobKeeper if they refuse to get the coronavirus vaccine.
An almighty storm has been brewing Down Under this week after Scott Morrison's team sent a Letter of Intent to a UK pharmaceutical company to ensure we get tens of millions of the Covid-19 vaccine if and when it's shown to be effective.
People have been up in arms about the potential cure to the pandemic and loads have said they won't get the jab over fears it hasn't gone through rigorous testing (which it most definitely will have in order to get approved).
But vaccine objectors could face a new threat if they keep up their act.
Health Minister Greg Hunt didn't rule out putting in place a measure to remove government paid subsidies from people who refuse to get vaccinated against the coronavirus.
"It won't be mandatory, but it will be widely encouraged," he said. "We are keeping on the table the existing mechanisms we have such as no jab, no pay [and] no jab, no play. We are one of the world's great vaccination nations and I expect very widespread uptake."
No Jab, No Play is a policy set up in several states that require children to get vaccinated if they want to attend pre-school. That means the Australian government could have a similar policy that would deny people getting support payments if they object without a health exemption.
But, Mr Hunt hopes it won't come to that.
"I'm confident that a very, very large numbers of Australians will take it up," he said. "We reserve the right, subject to medical advice, to take steps that might assist."
There have also been calls for Covid-19 vaccine objectors to be banned from travelling interstate and overseas as well as a campaign for businesses to be able to have the right to sack someone who isn't vaccinated.
Oxford University's vaccine has entered the third phase of testing, where it's now being trialled on thousands of willing participants.
So far, the previous tests have been promising.
The results of research published in medical journal The Lancet back in June concluded: "ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 was safe, tolerated, and immunogenic, while reactogenicity was reduced with paracetamol."
The study, which included 1,077 participants, warned that there is still much distance to be crossed, adding: "Current results focus on immune response measured in the laboratory. Further testing is needed to confirm if vaccine effectively protects against infection."
It's hoped this third phase will shed light on whether we can start mass producing the vaccine for everyone. The UK has already secured 100 million doses of the vaccine in the hopes it will be successful and Australia is ensuring it has a piece of the pie.