Top COVID-19 Scientist Shares Secrets of Race to Create Global Vaccine

Media Release

What’s it like to have the future of the planet in your hands? Pharmacists across Australia will get the chance to ask University of Oxford Professor Sarah Gilbert that question, later this month.

Professor Gilbert, who is the vaccinologist lead on the team developing a COVID-19 vaccine, will detail her mission to create the world’s first mass-produced COVID-19 vaccine and take questions from fellow professionals during an exclusive webinar on Tuesday 25 August.

Most informed observers, including the World Health Organisation, have highlighted the exceptional progress that Professor Gilbert and her team have made in recent months as the world’s best minds race to find a global COVID-19 vaccination solution.

Many independent experts believe the Oxford team may become the first scientists to solve the world’s most urgent health issue. The global pandemic has taken over 700,000 lives so far, with the number of cases surpassing 18.5 million1.

The clinical webinar is scheduled for the 25th August and will provide a unique opportunity for pharmaceutical professionals to get the inside-line on the current COVID-19 vaccine front-runner.

Pharmacist credentialed vaccinators in Australia are likely to be involved in administering the COVID-19 vaccine, should trials be successful, and agencies approve future use. The Australasian College of Pharmacy and The Pharmacy Guild of Australia, Queensland Branch, hope this webinar motivates even more pharmacists to undergo the necessary training to become vaccinators.

Queensland’s Chief Health Officer, Dr Jeannette Young, has previously said that it would be great for everyone to have access to a vaccine through their local community pharmacy, and that the Government continues to work with the Pharmacy Guild of Australia, Queensland Branch.

This online webinar, live from the UK, will assist pharmacists to understand the development and clinical issues with the world’s lead vaccine candidates.

All Australian pharmacists are encouraged to sign up – and to attend – the online webinar, to become engaged in this important scope of practice for pharmacists. Pharmacists nationwide can register for the webinar at

Kathy Knack, CEO of the Australasian College of Pharmacy encouraged their members, fellows and all pharmacists across Australian to register for this very special opportunity.

“All pharmacists should embrace with the opportunity to administer the COVID-19 vaccine. This webinar is an exclusive opportunity for pharmacists across the country to understand more about the journey Prof Gilbert and her team have been on and the pathway to a potential vaccine in the future. Pharmacists play a key role and we should embrace this opportunity to learn more about this important scope of practice.”

Professor Trent Twomey, Queensland Branch President, Pharmacy Guild of Australia, said that the webinar will be hosted and administered right from Brisbane.

“We’re pleased to connect community pharmacists with world-leading scientists, so they’re up-to-date with the latest COVID-19 vaccine and health information. With 97% of Australians being within 2.4km of their local community pharmacy in capital cities, and 65% within 2.5km in regional areas2, community pharmacists are ready to support the Government in rolling out a future COVID-19 vaccination as safely and conveniently as possible to the community.”

Prof. Gilbert is leading the University of Oxford team who are developing the front-running COVID-19 vaccine candidate. The webinar has been made possible by the Australasian College of Pharmacy, Professor Gilbert and the Pharmacy Guild of Australia, Queensland Branch.

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