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HomeNews UpdateCrisp: Vaccine apathy means SA may have to destroy COVID-19 doses

Crisp: Vaccine apathy means SA may have to destroy COVID-19 doses

South Africa is scaling back its COVID-19 vaccination drive and may have to destroy doses because of a lack of demand from citizens as the country heads into a fifth wave of infections.

The government has even unsuccessfully tried to donate the excess supply, reports Polity.

Take-up of the jabs has slowed to the point where keeping some sites running is unaffordable, said Nicholas Crisp, deputy director-general at the Department of Health who is in charge of the programme.

COVID-19 vaccinations will need to be incorporated into South Africa’s standard medical programmes, which means these specific shots will be less accessible, he added.

“No one is arriving” to get shots, Crisp said on Monday (9 May). “The numbers are just terrible.”

Only about half of South Africa’s 40m adults are fully protected, about a year after doses were first made available to the public. The 18 to 39 age group is the most reluctant, Crisp said.

The country failed to meet its original target of inoculating about two-thirds of adults by the end of 2021, as well as its plan to consistently administer about 300 000 vaccines a day. In the 24 hours to Monday evening, South Africa processed just 49,285 shots.


Polity article – S Africa cuts back vaccine drive amid citizen apathy, may have to destroy doses (Open access)


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Thousands of unvaccinated South Africans believe vaccines harmful


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Vaccine hesitancy among South Africans is becoming entrenched – UCT



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