The country has been dealt a massive blow when it comes to the Sisonke Protocol vaccine rollout and the fight against COVID-19 in South Africa. This as the use of Johnson & Johnson single jab vaccines has been suspended following a decision taken by the FDA and CDC in the United States following the identification of six rare blood clotting conditions in roughly 6.8 million doses administered Stateside.
While the percentage is very small, Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize and the National Department of Health (NDoH) has decided to put a hold on use of those particular vaccines for now.
“Given the preliminary literature on hand, our scientists are confident that the FDA’s decision is on a precautionary basis and we expect that this will not result in the complete withdrawal of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine from the vaccination armament,” he explained in a statement.
While we wait for more information on the suspended doses, Mkhize noted that a further 10 million doses from Pfizer have been requested, with two million expected to land in SA in May.
“This, therefore, means we have secured 30 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine for this financial year,” the minister added.
As for the current statistics for COVID-19 in South Africa, the latest NDoH report shows 847 new cases have been recorded over the past 24 hours. This has pushed the total number of cases recorded to date to 1 559 960, with 1 485 315 recoveries also being recorded. The department has confirmed 67 new fatalities, increasing the death toll to date to 53 423.
With Johnson & Johnson vaccine rollout suspended, the number of doses administered to date now sits at 292 623.
The full breakdown of COVID-19 in South Africa is as follows:
|Provinces||Confirmed Cases||Recoveries||Active cases||Deaths|
|Western Cape||284 404||268 041||16 363||11 516|
|Eastern Cape||195 707||184 058||11 649||11 396|
|Northern Cape||37 176||33 160||2 859||842|
|Free State||84 805||79 455||5 350||3 749|
|KwaZulu-Natal||335 245||319 072||16 173||10 271|
|North West||64 991||61 425||3 566||1 580|
|Mpumalanga||76 373||74 177||2 196||1 373|
|Gauteng||417 799||404 968||12 831||10 453|
|Limpopo||63 460||60 959||2 501||2 243|
|TOTAL||1 559 960||1 485 315||74 645||53 423|
As always, in order to stay up to date with the spread of COVID-19 in South Africa and abroad, we advise the following materials and platforms:
- Dr Zweli Mkhize on Twitter
- COVID-19 Connect on WhatsApp – add 0600 123 456 as a contact and say “Hi”.
- World Health Organisation
- SA Coronavirus website
- SA Government
- SA Presidency