Health Minister, Dr Zweli Mkhize, has conceded that the country is far from reaching its target in vaccinations.

Over 70 000 healthcare workers have so far been given the vaccine since the start of the vaccination programme.

The country received the first consignment of 80 000 doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccines almost two weeks.

At the weekend,  another 80 000 doses arrived in South Africa:

Mkhize says more should be done to accelerate the vaccination of healthcare workers.

“At this point up until last [Sunday] night, we have done over 70 000. That’s a very small number compared to the 1.5 million that we need to ultimately reach in terms of healthcare workers. Three phases that we’ve put up,” explains Mkhize.

“The first phase is mainly health workers. The next phase is going to be all frontline workers and the rest of the people who are actually serving the community on a frontline basis and those with comorbidities. So that angle is going to require us to have more and more vaccines and then the last one will be for everyone,” adds the minister.

The video below is the proceedings of the discussions:

Over the weekend, the department said South Africa was rapidly and successfully rolling out the delivery of the early access Johnson & Johnson vaccine to healthcare workers through the Sisonke Programme.

It hailed the “rapid rollout” of the vaccine as a critical first step in the three-phase national vaccination rollout plan.