WC health dept is now vaccinating homeless people

On Friday, health workers administered vaccines to those situated at the Haven Night Shelter in Kraaifontein.

The Strandfontein site, in Cape Town, which is housing homeless people during the COVID-19 lockdown. Picture: Kaylynn Palm/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The Western Cape Department of Health has started vaccinating homeless people in Cape Town this week.

On Friday, health workers administered vaccines to those situated at the Haven Night Shelter in Kraaifontein.

The department is working with organisations to assist.

Health staff will also head to other communities, such as Elsies River, in the coming weeks.

Meanwhile, national government Is once again urging people who are eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine to queue for the jab.

Health Minister Doctor Joe Phaahla and a panel of experts on Friday gave an update on the coronavirus vaccine rollout and their management of the pandemic.

Phaahla said there were enough vaccine stocks available, with another 21 million doses expected to arrive later this year.

“I was to once again call on our 60 years old and plus citizens to come forward to get vaccinated. This month we’re also registering and vaccinating those 30 years and above, and we also call on this cohort to come forward.”

Phaahla has urged South Africans to keep practising measures aimed at limiting further spread of the virus.

“The social distancing, the washing of hands, sanitising, wearing out masks when we’re in public and making sure that we keep away from crowded places.”

Provisional data of the Sisonke J&J vaccination programme for healthcare workers has shown the jab is effective against the Delta variant.

The study was rolled out in February this year.

Professor Glenda Gray, one of the programme's lead investigators, gave an update on the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine's efficacy seen in the vaccinated healthcare workers.

“It’s about 57% protection when Beta dominates and about 71% protection when Delta dominates. This is a very important message that protection is good and probably better against the Delta variant as compared to the Beta variant.”

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