Sahpra: Causality studies of vaccine side effects & deaths being conducted

Acting Health Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi and officials from the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (Sahpra) on Wednesday told parliamentarians that there were reports of breakthrough infections after people were inoculated with Pfizer or Johnson & Johnson vaccines.

An education department employee gets a COVID-19 vaccine shot at the Rabasotho community hall in Tembisa on 23 June 2021. Picture: Xanderleigh Dookey Makhaza/Eyewitness News

CAPE TOWN - Cases of people dying after receiving their coronavirus vaccinations are being investigated by health authorities.

Acting Health Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi and officials from the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (Sahpra) on Wednesday told parliamentarians that there were reports of breakthrough infections after people were inoculated with Pfizer or Johnson & Johnson vaccines.

Kubayi and Sahpra said that the autopsy results of those who died would be studied closely.

Kubayi and Sahpra faced MPs in a lengthy meeting on Wednesday night to give an update on the COVID-19 vaccination drive and the use of the ivermectin drug.

The meeting followed reports and anecdotal evidence of side effects to vaccines.

Over 5 million people have so far been inoculated, with pressure on authorities to continually step up the programme.

Sahpra CEO Boitumelo Semete-Makokotlela said that causality studies of vaccine side effects and deaths were being conducted.

"We're doing causality studies to determine that the event that we saw is indeed related to the vaccine or related to something else. They are very comprehensive studies that will be conducted so autopsies will be done."

Kubayi has also warned against misinformation being peddled by anti-vaxxers.

"What we want to caution against is the rise of fake news, the rise of fake posts and we appeal to South Africans to be cautious."

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