SA’s COVID-19 vaccines won’t be rolled out instantly, here’s why:

South Africa’s three-phase COVID-19 vaccine plan is only set to be rolled out at least two weeks after the first batch arrives on Monday

SA’s COVID-19 vaccines won’t be rolled out instantly, here’s why:

While the country’s first batch of COVID-19 vaccines is expected to land on our shores on Monday, 1 February 2021, the first jabs will likely only be administered after two weeks.

Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize announced on Wednesday, 27 January 2021 that a million doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19, manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII), will leave India on Sunday, via Dubai, before arriving at the OR Tambo International Airport, the next day.

Another 500 000 vaccine doses are expected to arrive later in February.

Mkhize said that certain process would have to be undertaken first before the COVID-19 vaccine can be administered.

“After the arrival of the vaccine, they will undergo some technical processes of quarantine, which is specified in the law, quality assurance, reconciliation – how many viles are there, how many are broken, how many need to be turned back, and all of those issues,” Mkhize said.

The minister said the measures were all necessary to ensure a safe distribution of the vaccine.

“These processes will take a minimum of 10 days and a maximum of 14 days to complete. Upon which we will then be ready to distribute the vaccine to all provinces,” he further said.

Mkhize thanks ‘compatriots’ for taking part in COVID-19 vaccine trials

The minister took the time to further express his appreciation for South Africans who took part in the COVID-19 vaccine trials.

“Today I want to pay tribute to those fearless compatriots who volunteered to participate in the trials, doing so without knowing whether they were getting the vaccine or placebo. Let us not forget these heroes who defied all anxieties and chose to be of service for the greater cause,” Mkhize said.

“It’s only through human trials that you can truly establish the safety and efficacy of the vaccine. They were those humans. We thank them for their noble contribution that has brought us to where we are today”

South Africa’s estimated 1.25 million healthcare workers will receive the COVID-19 jabs first. In addition, the country reached an agreement with the COVAX Facility to secure vaccines to immunise 10% of the population.

Phase 1 will focus on the country’s healthcare workers, while Phase 2 will focus on essential workers, persons in congregate settings, persons over the age of 60 and persons with co-morbidities who are over the age of 18.

Phase 3 will target approximately 22 500 000 South Africans, and will be administered to persons older than 18 years of age.

Source : The South African More