This website stores cookies on your computer. These cookies are used to improve your website experience and provide more personalized services to you, both on this website and through other media. To find out more about the cookies we use, see our Privacy Policy. We won't track your information when you visit our site. But in order to comply with your preferences, we'll have to use just one tiny cookie so that you're not asked to make this choice again.

Australian Olympians fast-tracked for jabs before Tokyo games

All Australian athletes and officials heading to the Tokyo Olympics will be fast-tracked for vaccination ahead of the games, the government has said.

More than 2,000 Olympians, Paralympians, their coaches and support staff will get the jabs.

The summer Olympics, delayed from 2020, will open on 23 July, followed by the Paralympic games on 24 August.

Before the government intervention, most Australian athletes would have been given the shots later in the year.

"We want to see our athletes head to Tokyo to compete and then return to Australia safely," Australian Health Minister Greg Hunt said on Tuesday.

Sports Minister Richard Colbeck said that "while vulnerable Australians remain an absolute priority as the vaccine rollout continues, National Cabinet [consisting of the prime minister and state and territory leaders] understands the pressure our high-performance athletes have been facing as the Tokyo Games draw closer.

"This will be a very different Olympics and Paralympics, but our athletes deserve the opportunity to compete," the minister added.

Last week, Japan announced emergency Covid measures in Tokyo and three other areas in a bid to curb rising infections, just three months before the Olympics are due to start. They had originally been planned to start in July 2020.

The government said the state of emergency - set to last until 11 May - would be "short and powerful".

Under the measures, bars are required to close and big sporting events will be held without spectators.

It marks the third state of emergency in Japan since the pandemic began. The country has had more than 10,000 Covid-related deaths, according to data compiled by America's Johns Hopkins University.

Meanwhile, Australia's approach to containing the outbreak is seen by many world health experts as a success story. The national death tally currently stands at 910, according to Johns Hopkins.


Source: BBC

Share This Post

related posts

On Top