Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and retired Archbishop Desmond Tutu was among the first seniors in South Africa to receive bumps on Monday when the country launched a massive vaccination campaign for people over 60.
The 89-year-old anti-apartheid icon and his wife Leah came out of the Brooklyn Chest Hospital in Cape Town in a wheelchair after taking their pictures.
After a long delay and just before a third wave of Covid-19 infections, South Africa finally rolled out of Die with A highly anticipated campaign to vaccinate around five million people over 60 by the end of June.
Health Minister Zweli Mkhize visited an elderly care facility in the mining town of Krugersdorp, around 30 kilometers (18) miles) west of Johannesburg, where he saw nurses administer thrusts.
Although South Africa is the worst virus-hit country in Africa, registering more than 1.6 million cases, including 55,210 deaths, h at South Africa fewer than 480,000 people or just vaccinated One percent of the population mainly heals caregivers.
The campaign began in February when South Africa became the first country in the world to administer vaccinations from the US pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson, but it did has developed slowly.
The government, which has received much criticism for the slow pace of the campaign, claims to have ordered enough doses to vaccinate at least 45 million of the estimated 59 million inhabitants.
“The goal should be five million seniors.” completed by the end of June, provided vaccine supplies go as expected, “said Mkhize.
He said the country expects to receive 4.5 million doses of Pfizer and two million J & amp; Weeks to have received J-doses, and 16.5 million people should be vaccinated by October.
South Africa and India are running global campaign to waive intellectual property rights for Covid-19 vaccines so that every country can produce them as a bad delay in the vaccination race back.
Last week, South Africa American President Cyril Ramaphosa regretted the deficit.
“A situation where the populations of advanced, richer countries are safely vaccinated, while millions in poorer countries queue to die would be tantamount to vaccinating against apartheid,” he said.
South Africa bought AstraZeneca vaccines earlier this year, ve But then bought them to other African countries because they feared they might be less effective J&J jabs, it had to take a two-week break in mid-April to check the risk of blood clots reported in the US.
The phase two rollout is being carried out at 87 vaccination sites using the Pfizer formula.
Mkhize said vaccinations would start “fairly slowly” before ramping up towards the end of the month, “because we’re starting a new vaccine that we’ve never used before”.
At a vaccination center in Johannesburg’s Germiston district, 61-year-old retiree Asha Naran was relieved. Finally a chance.
“I am very happy that we are getting the vaccine and we are making progress … everywhere otherwise they will get it. Our family in India has already had it twice. So they are way ahead of us, so we want this thing to go faster, “she told AFP after receiving her push.
< p> After a short break, infections in South Africa rose by up to 46 percent between the last week of April and the first week of May.
Some experts blame the jump in some cases for the delayed stinging campaign.
< p> “If we had introduced the vaccine much earlier that would have helped,” said medical professor Nombulelo Magula, who is on the advisory committee of the Covid-19 minister.