A study has found that the Eastern Cape does not have sufficient capacity to successfully handle Phase 2 of the COVID-19 vaccination rollout programme.

The research was conducted by the Health Sciences Faculty at the University of Fort Hare. It shows that rural and remote areas will be difficult to reach as the number of vaccine sites is inadequate.

The province aims to vaccinate at least 700 000 people during the second phase. The Acting Dean for Health Services at the University of Fort Hare, Prof Leon Van Niekerk, says a new strategy is needed.

“Those centres where the inoculation takes place might be way too far from where they live. We are already struggling with that as it is without the COVID-19 vaccination process, that people live so far away from primary health services that some research is indicating that people need to travel as far as twice that the World Health Organization is saying that it is fine for a person.”

Phase 2 COVID-19 vaccination process off to a smooth start in Tshwane

The Phase 2 COVID-19 vaccination process kicked off smoothly in the Tshwane region last week with around 4 000 elderly residents likely to be vaccinated by the end of this week. More than 80 old age homes had been earmarked for this phase. Traditional healers will also be accommodated for vaccination.

Tshwane chairperson for the vaccination programme, Modise Makutu, says although they have set targets, the numbers are seemingly growing.

“In Tshwane. we are targeting 700 traditional healers with 51 registered. With regard to funeral parlours, over 2 000 is our target, no indication as yet how many have registered. We were targeting 3 000 but the numbers have grown because we’ve seen people registering up to 4 000,” says Makutu.

Terrence Duurland (73) from the Holy Cross Old Aged Home at Suiderberg in Pretoria North was among the first senior citizens to take the shot.

“It was fine. I didn’t feel the pain. I encourage all old people to take it without being afraid of anything. No pain I’m feeling fine, no problem,” says Duurland.


The video below is on vaccine rollout in the Eastern Cape being a concern: