11 Covid-19 deaths for SA as 325K Pfizer doses touchdown
Johannesburg - Health Minister Zweli Mkhize has confirmed 11 more Covid-19 deaths, taking South Africa’s death toll to over 54 417.
Total infections since the pandemic arrived are now at over 1 584 064.
Mkhize also said more than 318 670 healthcare workers had now been vaccinated under the Sisonke Protocol.
Under the Sisonke Protocol, the South African government is administering vaccines to healthcare workers in the public and private sector through an early access study.
Recently, the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority approved the use of the Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer coronavirus vaccines for emergency use.
On Sunday, Mkhize announced that more than 325 000 Pfizer vaccine doses were expected to touchdown at OR Tambo International Airport just before midnight.
In an update on the delivery of Johnson and Johnson and Pfizer vaccine doses, Mkhize said 325 260 Pfizer vaccine doses were expected to arrive at Johannesburg’s OR Tambo International Airport at about 11.45pm.
He said a National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure (NATJOINTS) was on guard to monitor the security of the transportation of the vaccine at the airport and to ensure the safe passage of the vaccine to the various vaccination sites.
“They have engaged all security agencies to ensure all necessary security procedures are in place for safe delivery of the vaccines and made the necessary arrangements with the police. “Upon arrival the entire batch will be transported initially to a central warehouse.
“Samples will be sent to the National Control Laboratory for quality assurance and, after release, will be distributed to the provinces,” said Mkhize.
Mkhize said South Africa would be receiving about 300 000 Pfizer vaccine doses on a weekly basis until the end of May and this would be doubled to abut 630 000 weekly doses from June.
South Africa expects to have secured at least 4.5 million Pfizer vaccine doses by the end of June, he said.