Tuesday, 28 September, 2021
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Talking Points

Oxford Vaccine Group: Delta renders herd immunity ‘mythical’

Reaching herd immunity is “not a possibility” with the current Delta variant, says the head of Britain's Oxford Vaccine Group in a report in The...

Research turns to potential affect of COVID vaccines on menstrual cycle

While many of the side effects of a COVID vaccine are known and well publicised, thousands in the US think that they may have...

WHO’s vaccine head on why the rush for COVID booster jabs is premature

When the World Health Organization (WHO) recently called for a moratorium on giving COVID-19 booster shots except in rare circumstances, it cited vaccine inequity...

Unpacking COVID vaccination's effect on fertility and sexual functioning

Rumours and myths about the COVID-19 vaccine effects on reproduction and sexual functioning have spread across social media platforms, where people swop rumours of...

Biden administration wants boosters for most people 8 months after vaccination

US President Joe Biden's administration has decided that most Americans should get a coronavirus booster vaccination eight months after they received their second shot,...

Cubaʼs health system in acute distress as COVID cases soar

Cubaʼs health care system, long a source of national pride, is in acute distress, writes The New York Times. After fending off COVID-19 last year,...

Scientists fumble for explanations as breakthrough infections rise

Medical scientists are struggling to pin down the reasons for the surprisingly high number of vaccinated people who are getting breakthrough COVID-19 infections, writes...

SAMJ: Vaccine hesitancy has little to with the rantings of a cardiac surgeon

The media, both social and otherwise, has been full of the irresponsible rantings of a well-known health professional against the COVID-19 vaccination in the...

Only Africa’s leaders can staunch Africa’s medical brain drain

Despite international interventions to staunch Africa's long existing medical brain drain, the key issue is that the continent’s leaders will have to exercise strong...

Oxford Vaccine Group: Delta renders herd immunity ‘mythical’

Reaching herd immunity is “not a possibility” with the current Delta variant, says the head of Britain's Oxford Vaccine Group in a report in The...

Research turns to potential affect of COVID vaccines on menstrual cycle

While many of the side effects of a COVID vaccine are known and well publicised, thousands in the US think that they may have...

WHO’s vaccine head on why the rush for COVID booster jabs is premature

When the World Health Organization (WHO) recently called for a moratorium on giving COVID-19 booster shots except in rare circumstances, it cited vaccine inequity...

COVID-19 herd immunity. It’s not going to happen, so what next?

Herd immunity is no longer a discussion the world should be having, writes Professor Shabir A Madhi of the University of the Witwatersrand in...

CDC warns: Delta more transmissible than Ebola, as contagious as chickenpox

The Delta variant is more transmissible than Ebola and as infectious as chickenpox, warns the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, writes MedicalBrief....

Realisation that COVID will be ‘a long warʼ sparks anger and denial

The prospect of a prolonged COVID-19 outbreak and constantly evolving roster of restrictions has brought back another feature of pandemic living — anger —...

COVID-19 in children: The South African experience and way forward

Surveillance data in South Africa indicate that the lower risk of COVID-19 infection, disease, death or transmission experienced by children is age-dependent – and...

Zimbabwe plays political roulette with vaccines

Despite a failing COVID-19 programme forcing the Zimbabwean government to allow private hospitals and clinics in infection hotspots to vaccinate, it insists the country...

The long and painful road to the Life Esidimeni inquest

On Monday an inquest began into the deaths of 144 mental health patients after they were discharged from Life Esidimeni into communities more than...

Asia’s COVID tsunami threatens to engulf the Olympic Games

Once envied for their ability to contain the spread of COVID-19, many Asian countries are now battling new strains of the coronavirus and case...

The long, slow collapse of South Africa’s top hospitals

Professor Daynia Ballot, head of Clinical Medicine at the University of the Witwatersrand, has three decades of experience working in hospitals in Gauteng. Writing...

Ivermectin is not a ‘miracle drug’ against COVID. Vaccines are

Ivermectin may well prove to be useful in the battle against COVID-19 but it’s no “miracle drug”, write Claire Berlinski and Yuri Deigin in...

Fourfold more US soldiers commit suicide than die in combat

Since 9/11, four times as many United States service members and veterans have died by suicide than have been killed in combat, reports NBC...

Benefits of mix-and-match approach to COVID-19 vaccines

There are a number of potential advantages to a mix-and-match approach to vaccination against COVID-19, writes Maureen Ferran, Associate Professor of Biology at Rochester...

Obesity paradox gets new support – Ventilator-associated pneumonia study

Against expectations, French researchers have found obese hospitalised patients were at no greater risk for ventilator-associated pneumonia than those of normal weight, writes John...

COVID jabs for billions of humans will earn their makers billions of dollars

Drug-makers led by United States firms Pfizer and Moderna stand to make tens of billions of dollars from their COVID-19 vaccines this year and...

COVID-19 in children: No room for complacency

The most probable outcome of COVID-19 in children is, a complete and uncomplicated recovery. But the calculus of risk changes drastically when considered from...

Health tourism by Africa's leaders costs their countries dearly

Many of Africa's leaders have neglected the health care needs of their people, while selfishly finding treatment for themselves and their families abroad, writes...

HPCSA"s presentation on medical schemes’ role in NHI was 'incoherent'

The presentation by the Health Professions Council of SA’s Professor Mbulaheni Nemutandani before last week's Health Portfolio Committee, in which the HPCSA called for...

The WHO and tobacco policy – A seven-point reform agenda

The tobacco policies and actions of the World Health Organization are in urgent need of reform, if the United Nations’ global health agency is...

What really happened in the Charlotte Maxeke Hospital fire

When the Charlotte Maxeke  fire caused the evacuation of 700 patients and the destruction of an estimated R40m in hospital supplies, Gauteng Health denied...

Keep a particularly hot spot in Hell for health tenderpreneurs

State looting has been disastrous for South Africa in many ways, both practical and philosophical, writes William Saunderson-Meyer in the Jaundiced Eye column. But...

A bitter dispute over SA's vaccine secrecy

Some of South Africa’s most respected and influential scientists have been engaged for weeks in a bitter dispute in the SA Medical Journal over...

Academics dismiss MAC-Vac head Schoub's angry SAMJ editorial as a 'distraction'

The dispute between leading scientists in academia and the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Vaccines' Prof Barry Schoub, continued this week in the SA Medical...

Opera singing is helping long-haul COVID patients to recover

ENO Breathe is a pilot breathing and well-being programme for people recovering from COVID-19 but still suffering from breathlessness and anxiety, deevloped in partnership...

SA's alcohol bans were not 'not based on credible science'

Research challenging the conventional wisdom over the South African government's alcohol bans has been met with “spittle-flecked fury” from the anti-alcohol establishment, writes Peter...

MAC vaccine chair slams critics who 'disparage' the DoH

Professor Barry Schoub has in a strongly worded SA Medical Journal editorial criticised other experts who said the country should have gone ahead with...

Sweden's COVID-19 experiment has divided the world

The world is divided about the Swedish “light touch”  approach to COVID-19, seeing it either a a triumph of good sense or disastrous misstep,...

Vaccination successes mustn't overshadow the massive failures — Peter Piot

In the first wave of COVID-19, the mortality rate in a London hospital was roughly the same as that from Ebola in West Africa...

Unpacking the lingering questions over AstraZeneca's vaccine

In response to US government concerns over data used, AstraZeneca released updated information on its COVID-19 clinical trial, showing an effectiveness rate of 76%...

SA's 22,000 pharmacists should be mobilised as vaccinators

South Africa must expand the healthcare workforce that is able to meet the immediate demand for COVID-19  vaccinators, writes the University of KwaZulu-Natal's Velisha...