Australia has ordered 33 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine to be rolled out from early next year if the trials prove successful.
Deputy Chief Medical Officer Dr Nick Coatsworth said the delay did not necessarily mean the vaccine deal was dead but the adverse reaction needed to be investigated.
He is not worried about the trial being put on hold and praised the transparency of those testing the vaccine.
“I’m going to wait to see exactly what the adverse reaction was and whether they attribute it to the vaccine,” Coatsworth told Nine on Wednesday.
AstraZeneca confirmed the trial had been voluntarily paused after an unexplained illness in a British participant.
An independent committee will now review the data.
“This is a routine action which has to happen whenever there is an unexplained illness in one of the trials, while it is investigated, ensuring we maintain the integrity of the trials,” the company said in a statement.
“In large trials, illnesses will happen by chance but must be independently reviewed to check this carefully.
“We are working to expedite the review of the single event to minimise any potential impact on the trial timeline. We are committed to the safety of our participants and the highest standard of conduct in our trials.”
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