The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA) notes the placing of the Astra-Zeneca rollout on hold in view of the latest scientific data showing the vaccine gives minimum protection against mild-to-moderate infection caused by the country’s dominant variant.
While we welcome the move to put the roll out plan of the vaccine on hold, we hope the process of accelerating the procurement and roll-out of J&J and Pfizer vaccines and the approval of these by the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) will be expedited.
It is a matter of fact now that many healthcare workers are exposed to the virus in the workplace, more especially now that PPE has proven not to be effective in protecting them as research by UCT and investigation by SIU have revealed. We also call on the management of the Department of Health at institutions to refrain from victimizing healthcare workers for demanding quality and sufficient PPE in the workplace.
DENOSA’s main concern is the safety of both healthcare workers and community members and, as such, acknowledges the superior scientific guidance that the government is getting and acting according to.
While the process of securing the two other vaccines is underway, DENOSA is demanding maximum protection for healthcare workers as called for by Occupational Health and Safety Act in the country. Government and all ifher employers are still responsible for the safety of employees in the workplace, and there’s a need to improve drastically from how it has done so far.
We hope that, in future, the efficacy of the vaccine will be confirmed in the country before purchasing.
Issued by the Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA)