Australia announces coronavirus vaccine deal

Coronavirus

"If this vaccine proves successful, we will ... make it free for 25 million Australians"

Coronavirus vaccine, antibodies

(David Morrison/Eli Lilly via AP)

CANBERRA, Australia — Australia has announced a deal to manufacture a potential coronavirus vaccine being developed by British-Swedish pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca.

“Under the deal, every single Australian will be able to receive the University of Oxford COVID-19 vaccine for free, should trials prove successful, safe and effective,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison said in a statement Wednesday.

Morrison said the Oxford University trial was in a phase-three stage and more work was needed to prove its viability.

“If this vaccine proves successful, we will manufacture and supply vaccines straight away under our own steam and make it free for 25 million Australians,” Morisson said.

Morrison said there was no guarantee that the vaccine would be successful, “which is why we are continuing our discussions with many parties around the world while backing our own researchers at the same time to find a vaccine.”

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