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Initial Batch Of Australian COVID-19 Vaccine Showed HIV False Positives
Imagine the fear of going in for your yearly check-up, and being told you are positive for an auto-immune disease, after taking the COVID-19 vaccine. That was almost the story across Australia.
Last week the Australian government announced plans to completely ditch a batch of vaccines produced by the University of Queensland and the biotech company, CSL. Fragments of a special protein that was used in the vaccine, is also found in H.I.V.
“We can’t have any issues with confidence,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison told reporters in a press conference. “We are as a nation now, with a good portfolio of vaccines, able to make these decisions to best protect the Australian people.”
The issue with the batches was that trial volunteers, were in turn producing false positive readings of H.I.V., which as one can imagine can be very problematic in the grand scheme of things. Rather than take that chance, Australian officials cancelled a $750 million order, or roughly 51 million doses, that was set to be used in the country.
While the scientists made it clear that the botched doses could in no way infect patients with H.I.V., it was better for them to be safe rather than sorry. It was also noted that this error likely came from the urgency and speed to get a vaccine created, seeing as though testing usually takes years before the final product is released to the public.