Image by Flickr
Image by Flickr
Department of Health Minister Joe Phaahla has announced that South Africa won’t be supporting foreign nationals with COVID-19 second vaccine jabs if the first doses occurred outside the country. Mzansi only offers Pfizer as well as Johnson & Johnson vaccines.
According to reports, many foreign nationals either received the first of two or three vaccination doses in their home countries such as Zimbabwe or somewhere in the continent of Europe.
The vaccination process has thus created a demand for South Africa to deliver supporting doses of the relevant vaccines.
“There is the issue of people who have come from other countries having received vaccines which are not used now in RSA,” Paahla said.
“These are either foreign nationals who reside in South Africa and had gone home and received a vaccine such as AstraZeneca, Moderna, Sputnik, Sinovac etc not yet in use in RSA.
“We are not able to provide second doses where they are required and neither can we give them a vaccine certificate when they need one.”
The health leader did however reveal that the office has been advised that Mzansi can be able to support AstraZeneca and Moderna vaccines.
“The advice we have received is that such individuals can be offered one dose of Pfizer to complete their two doses as there is evidence that AstraZeneca and Moderna combine well with Pfizer and it’s believed that it’s safe with the others as well.”
Meanwhile, the department of health has confirmed the overall vaccinations progress since the start of the rollout in February 2021. The number of jabs administered has breached the 20 million mark.
The government is aiming at vaccinating as many as 40 million South Africans by the end of the year, which would simultaneously avoid a possible fourth or fifth wave of COVID-19 infections.