AstraZeneca Vaccine Rollout Temporarily Suspended In SA and Here Is Why. Just a week ago there was so much excitement when the AstraZeneca Vaccine reached our shores. The first phase of the rollout programme was meat to prioritize around 1.2 million frontline health workers across the country. Sadly, the rollout of AstraZeneca has been put on hold while more studies are carried on by scientists.
At first, the vaccine was said to be 62 to 90 percent effective, depending on the initial dosage. but this was before the variant was discovered and became common in South Africa. Unfortunately much of the antibody induced by the vaccine was not actually active against the variant circulating in South Africa. After testing was done with the vaccine on the new variant, not much of a difference was seen between the vaccine group and placebo group.
Another reason for suspension is that the over 1 million AstraZeneca vaccines that arrived in SA on Monday are due to expire in April. This was only picked up when they arrived in SA. The vaccine has a six month life span. Even though rollout was set to begin this month, with two doses needed weeks apart, rollout would not be successful.
This has dampened the spirits of those who started to have hope that we will beat Covid-19. Some took to social media to air their views on this change that wasn’t anticipated.