Johannesburg: The South African authorities will retailer the 1.5 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine that it’s going to obtain from India within the subsequent few weeks at a secret place due to the danger of theft on the market at black market costs, in line with a media report.
The vaccines are a highly-rated commodity as soon as they’re stolen and attain the black market, Division of Well being spokesperson Popo Maja advised the weekly Metropolis Press on Sunday, including that if this happens, there’s a danger that the costs of those illegally-obtained vaccines will probably be hiked considerably.
There will probably be a central place the place the consignment will probably be saved and from the place we’ll distribute it to hospital and clinic pharmacies that may retailer it, Maja stated.
There is a safety problem too as a result of international locations which have already begun rolling out the vaccines have warned us that there’s a large theft of it, so we could not even disclose the place it’s being centrally saved, Maja stated.
Well being Minister Zweli Mkhize stated throughout an deal with to the South African parliament final week, that the federal government had secured 1.5 million doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine from India as South Africa battles exponentially rising infections and deaths each day amid a second wave of the coronavirus and a brand new variant of the virus.
In a single day on Sunday, there have been over 21,600 new infections and 399 extra deaths.
One million doses are anticipated from India earlier than the top of this month and an extra 500,000 in February, with healthcare staff in each authorities and personal amenities being prioritised for vaccination.
Mkhize additionally allayed issues that the vaccine to be equipped by India had not but been accredited by South African regulators.
He stated groups from the division of well being in addition to the South African Well being Merchandise Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) have been fine-tuning and aligning all of the laws and processes to make sure that there have been no pointless delays or impediments to roll out the vaccine.
We’re all completely satisfied that the Serum Institute of India and the AstraZeneca vaccine have already been accredited by numerous regulators and is being rolled out in different international locations, he stated.
Addressing issues that corruption would possibly make the method expensive, as had been the case within the provision of Private Protecting Gear (PPE) to well being staff for months through the COVID-19 lockdown, Mkhize gave an assurance that there can be no corruption because the deal was being completed straight between the federal government and the producer, in contrast to the middlemen used within the PPE acquisitions who had exploited the scenario.