Newly-appointed Health Minister Dr Joe Phaahla says he’s confident that approving the use of the Sinovac vaccine will accelerate government’s vaccine roll out. The South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) approved the use of the vaccine last month.
The vaccine will be used to innoculate those who are aged 18 and older. This inclusion will start on 1 September.
Phaahla says they have procured over 40-million vaccine doses from now until the end of the year.
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He says they also anticipate to start using the AstraZeneca vaccine soon to fight COVID-19.
“In our last National Coronavirus Council meeting, our Ministerial Advisory Committee made a presentation. And following that presentation, it was approved that within our arsenal we must also include the Sinovac vaccine. But also that the AstraZeneca vaccine, which has shown to be effective against the Delta variant, we should also bring it back into use,” says Phaahla.
The Department of Health says it has approved the use of the Sinovac vaccine.
Phaahla says they plan to reach a target of vaccinating over a million people every three days. This will accelerate the vaccination drive for the 18 plus age group.
Health Minister Dr Joe Phaahla media briefing on government efforts to fight COVID-19 pandemic: