After it signed a proper vaccination program agreeing on a vaccine initially only to find things falling off the plan as expected, South Africa is back to making big news on the new COVID 19 vaccination plan after it gave green signal to Pfizer. The new year, it could be said, did not really begin on a sterling note for the enterprising African nation as far as its COVID vaccination plans were concerned.
It is no brand news or random development that soon after the first week of February, South Africa cancelled the entirety of the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine after it clearly failed to stop the COVID virus variant.
The next big step, where it comes to the vaccination drive, is the introduction of the vaccine by Pfizer with South Africa signing a mega agreement worth 20 million doses. In what can be called a breaking development from the famed Madiba-land, the new Pfizer deal is a new fillip to the country in addition to the 31-million single shot doses it added from Johnson and Johnson.
The main news, therefore, from the South African heartland is that the country is gearing up to witness a mass inoculation drive from the mid of April, 2021.
That being said, here is another important development pertaining to the signing of the new vaccine; it is expected that the first batch of the required number of doses shall arrive in the country not before end of April.
The above was confirmed by Anban Pillay, who happens to be the Deputy-Director General at the Department of Health.
Further to this information, what was revealed recently was the purchasing cost for the Johnson and Johnson COVID 19 vaccine. It is believed that the noted J&J vaccine is priced at USD 10 per dose.
But that said, the signing of the Pfizer vaccine comes at an important time for South Africa that is keen to address the immunisation of its entire population, cluster inoculation being a thing of the past.
After receiving the predetermined number of the Pfizer vaccine doses, South Africa, it is confirmed, will have enough numbers to vaccine no fewer than 41 million of its population (out of the 60 million in the country).
The country has also renewed its focus to protect the health line workers who are engaged in the frontline of the war against the COVID epidemic.
Meanwhile, here is what a website WHBL happened to report in lines with the current measures being taken in South Africa since the signing of the Pfizer deal:
Health experts have urged the government to scale up its vaccination programme in the light of speculation that Africa’s most industrialized country is likely to be hit by a third wave of infections in the winter months of June and July.
South Africa’s vaccination campaign was dealt a blow in early February when it put on hold a plan to start inoculations with AstraZeneca’s vaccine, after a small trial showed it offered minimal protection against mild to moderate COVID-19 caused by the dominant local coronavirus variant.