Health Minister Zweli Mkhize announced on Thursday that South Africa will receive one million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine from the Serum Institute of India (SII) in January.
“We will be receiving the first one million doses of the vaccine in January and another 500,000 in February from the Serum Institute of India. We are all happy that the Serum Institute of India and the AstraZeneca vaccine has already been approved by various regulators and is being rolled out. Our teams from the National Department of Health and the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) were fine tuning and aligning all the regulations processes to ensure that there are no unnecessary delays or regulatory impediments to activate this rollout.”
Mkhize explained the proposed phased approach and confirmed that health workers will be at the front of the queue to receive the vaccine.
All those classed as essential to the functioning of society would be prioritised for the vaccine in the first round of the immunisation campaign, including teachers, law enforcement officials, retail food workers, and miners.