Australia to destroy $100 million of swine flu vaccine

Australia’s stock of swine flu vaccine expires soon and may have to be thrown out at a cost of $100 million.

Last year, during the height of the swine flu scare, the Australian government spent $200 million buying 21 million doses of Panavax H1N1, according to

Just under half of the stockpile of vaccine was delivered to doctors, and even less was used on patients. There are 3.8 million doses being sent to the World Health Organization, and 7.8 million left to be destroyed.

An Australian health department spokesman announced that the first batch of vaccine began to expire in October and that the entire supply would expire by the end of the year. It will be treated as medical waste, reports.

Opposition health spokesman Peter Dutton said that the expiration represents major government waste.

"This is yet another rounding issue for this government," Dutton said, according to WAToday. "The Gillard government just can't get the detail right. They have overreacted to a number of key issues and their response to this issue is going to cost taxpayers tens of millions.”

Australian Health Minister Nicola Roxon said at the beginning of the month that Australia had moved from the “protect phase” to the “alert phase,” signaling the end of the swine flu pandemic in the country, according to