The AstraZeneca vaccine, which Australia has primarily stockpiled, is only 10% effective against the fast-spreading South African coronavirus variant, according to research published in the New England Journal of Medicine. The Pfizer vaccine is 75% effective.
The South African variant has been detected in Indonesia, with cases in both Jakarta and Bali, as recently as Tuesday.
The South African variant caused half of all Covid cases in Qatar, according to viral genome sequencing conducted between late-February and mid-March. Some 44.5% of cases were caused by the British variant (B.1.1.7 variant).
The study by the South African Medical Research Council Vaccines and Infectious Diseases Analytics Research Units, in partnership with other…