SAMA ‘relieved’ at imminent arrival of Covid-19 vaccine

SAMA ‘relieved’ at imminent arrival of Covid-19 vaccine

The South African Medical Association (SAMA) says it is relieved the one million doses of AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine will be arriving on Monday. 

SAMA ‘relieved’ at imminent arrival of Covid-19 vaccine

The first shipment of the AstraZeneca vaccine left Mumbai in India on Sunday morning and is expected to arrive at OR Tambo International Airport on Monday. 


The country’s frontline healthcare workers will be the first to receive a jab during phase one of the vaccination campaign.


SAMA CEO Angelique Coetzee says the first shipment of the vaccine is a step in the right direction.

“We are very relieved to notice the arrival of the first batch of vaccine coming in tomorrow. This is the first step into the right direction.


“Although the difficulties is going to be experienced in terms of the rollout, how ready clinics are, how ready the public sector hospitals are, private hospitals as well, but at least it is here and from SAMA’s side, the vaccination programme will start mid-February,” adds Coetzee.  


“We will see how it plays out and fortunately this first batch of the vaccine coming into the country, is for healthcare workers which makes it easier to control the problems which might arise from it.” 

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Coetzee believes the vaccination period of the first batch will give the government time to procure more vaccines. 

“With the AstraZeneca vaccine coming in, you only need to vaccinate now and only three months later, you need to get a second shot, so for now that should be enough coming into the country. 


“That will give government ample time to procure a second dosage which should only be due in three months from the start of the first dosage. We also aware of the Pfizer vaccine coming into the country, not sure when that is but we are aware of that.” 


Health Minister Zweli Mkhize has been quoted as saying that the country has secured another 20-million doses of Covid-19 vaccine from pharmaceutical giant Pfizer.


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