SA Fails To Achieve Covid-19 Vaccination Target

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As Covid-19 vaccines became readily available in the country, the South African government set a target of vaccinating 70% of the adult population before the end of 2021. 


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As Covid-19 vaccines became readily available in the country, the South African government set a target of vaccinating 70% of the adult population before the end of 2021.

This target was not met. Around 45% of South Africa’s adult population were vaccinated against the virus. Just below 28 million Covid-19 vaccines were administered in the country.

However, 65% of people older than 60 years old received a vaccine. This is important as they are seen as the most vulnerable portion of the population when it comes to Covid-19.

The Department of Health believed that a lack of trust in the government along with a limited supply of vaccines at the beginning of the country’s vaccination rollout plan contributed to the department failing to reach the 70% target.

It is believed that if a large enough portion of the country’s population was vaccinated against Covid-19, the country would reach so called ‘herd-immunity’.

Herd-immunity is achieved when a large portion of a community's population becomes immune to an infectious disease.

This immunity would be achieved through previous infection or vaccination. This immunity will make it less likely for people to become infected or reinfected with the disease.

Doctor Alex Sigal, a member of the African Health Research Institute says that being infected by the Omicron variant has enhanced immunity in some people. He was part of a study that looked at the effects of the Omicron variant.

He said, “we looked at people's Immunity, their antibodies in the blood after infection with Omicron and not surprisingly they get immunity to omicron but what surprised us and kind of made us pretty happy was that they also had more immunity to the delta variant”.

Sigal explained that the reason why this finding was welcomed is because the delta variant is more pathogenic. Being more pathogenic means it leads to more severe disease.

 

 

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