With over 8m vaccine doses administered, SA's mass jab programme picking up pace

Using either the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine or the two-shot Pfizer alternative, 3.3 million adults have now been officially fully vaccinated.

People wait in line to get their COVID-19 vaccination at the Witkoppen Clinic in Fourways on 27 July 2021. Picture: @GautengHealth/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - South Africa’s vaccination programme is starting to pick up pace, with the country administering over eight million COVID-19 vaccines.

Using either the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine or the two-shot Pfizer alternative, 3.3 million adults have now been officially fully vaccinated.

While this only accounts for 8.3% of a population of about 60 million people, South Africa remains the hardest-hit country on the continent, with over 2.4 million COVID-19 cases and at least 73,000 fatalities.

Hitting its stride after a faltering start, South Africa’s mass vaccination drive gave jabs to over 185,000 people in the past 24-hour recorded period, bringing the country’s total vaccinated population to 8,182,000.

Gauteng continues to lead the vaccine drive, with just over two million residents having received their jabs, followed by KwaZulu-Natal at 1.5 million and the Western Cape at 1.2 million.

South Africa now appears to have an adequate supply of doses.

The first consignment of more than 5.7 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine from the US arrived this week.

The donation is expected to give the country's immunisation programme a significant boost after initial supply constraints.

Another encouraging factor is the enthusiasm for the vaccines, as people between the ages of 18 and 34 are anticipating their vaccine rollout from next month.

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