South Africa has lost 274 312 COVID vaccine doses to wastage, equating to an estimated R83m in lost money through avoidable waste, including damages, expiry dates and “doses lost during the unrest in July 2021”.
This was according to a recent reply from the Health Minister to a Democratic Alliance parliamentary question, reports Polity.
Apparently, South Africa has lost 245,232 Pfizer doses and 29,080 Johnson & Johnson doses as of 21 November 2021.
One Pfizer shot is estimated at R308, while a Johnson & Johnson jab is around R280.
The DA has called on on the Health Department to develop workable solutions to curb the avoidable wastage.
As daily infections surge, South Africa needs to accelerate its vaccination campaign, said DA Member on the Portfolio Committee of Health Haseena Ismail. “We urgently need to increase the numbers of vaccines being given, particularly as large numbers of South Africans begin travelling across the country for the holiday season.”
The Health Department, she added, had to intensify its vaccine awareness campaigns to minimise vaccines being unused and expiring.
“Not only are we losing crucial vaccines to wastage, but we are also wasting millions of rands and undermining our ability to continue fighting the pandemic.”
See more from MedicalBrief archives: