Top Australian health officials now say people need a third coronavirus vaccine dose to be considered up to date.

Comment: Note… considered.

Walt Handelsman/ Tribune Content Agency

The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation is also checking medical supply chains and auditing hospital capacity to ensure the country is prepared for the predicted combined wave of the coronavirus and influenza this winter.

In a step away from the stricter “fully vaccinated” message, ATAGI will instead urge people to be “up to date” and get a booster within six months of their second shot.

Health experts have previously repeated the importance of a booster for added protection against the Omicron variant.

Comment: Omnicron is the least vicious of the variants yet we continue to treat as the more dangerous? Virology 101 ….More spreadable but less deadly

National cabinet agreed in its Thursday meeting that there would be no national mandates for three doses except for aged care workers, but states and territories are open to decide any other local requirements.

The advisory group is still considering whether a fourth dose will be needed by vulnerable people, including the elderly. Aged care providers have been asked to express interest in vaccinating their own residents and staff ahead of winter.

In the national cabinet meeting, state and territory leaders alongside Prime Minister Scott Morrison agreed that jurisdictions could shift to phase D of the national transition plan in their own time.

Comment: In their own time…Sounds like a train wreck to me?

Comment: Phase D — Who knew?

That final phase of reopening will see a move to “living with COVID” where the coronavirus will be managed similarly to influenza or other infectious diseases, with minimal restrictions or lockdowns imposed on the community.

It will be up to states and territories to decide whether to mandate boosters in sectors including healthcare.

Many states in the discussion said they could not see how they would impose third-dose mandates.

Last week, federal Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly said the country needed to prepare for a second wave of Omicron as well as a wave of influenza, with that virus currently circulating in the northern hemisphere.

“I do believe that we will have another wave of Omicron in winter – and I think we will have a flu wave in winter for the first time … since the beginning of 2020,” he said.

Comment: So where has the flu virus been vacationing for 2 years?

But a top doctor suggests that January’s peak of Omnicron has passed, so the idea of a 3rd shot is abitrary

Advice? But whose advice?