Shoppers, shuttles & schools: How SA plans to ramp up COVID vaccinations

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The health department is working to bring COVID-19 vaccines closer to where everyday people spend their time (malls, businesses, schools) in an effort to meet lagging immunisation targets. Bhekisisa spoke to the health department’s Nicholas Crisp on Health Hub on Newzroom Afrika.

The role of regulators — Why South Africa hasn’t approved Sputnik V yet

Russia’s Sputnik V COVID vaccine has yet to be approved by any stringent regulators. Part of the problem: the manufacturer’s reluctance to share information about the jab. Here’s what it takes for a vaccine to make it through regulatory bodies and how Sputnik got around the process in some countries.

A hamburger recipe, vaccine science edition

What goes into the scientific hamburger of a COVID vaccine? A lot of trust.

How not to run a vaccine clinical trial – The Sputnik case study

Russia’s COVID vaccine, Sputnik V, is plagued by a series of red flags and question marks surrounding its clinical trials and results. Here’s how the jab took a shortcut and created sceptics about its underlying science.

How fast is too fast? In the driver’s seat with the pandemic’s peer reviewers

Checkpoints in the scientific system are put in place to ensure that research can be sped up in a safe way. But during the COVID pandemic, the accelerated timeline to push research out in an effort to help has exposed gaps in the process that allow bad science to slip through.

Correlation ≠ causation: How to link a death to COVID vaccines for sure

Nobody in South Africa has died after getting a COVID vaccine, shows a new report from South Africa’s medicine regulator the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority. Find out how Sahpra links severe side-effects to the vaccines in this easy explainer.

EXCLUSIVE: Every COVID question you’ve wanted to ask Dr Anthony Fauci

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We ask the infectious diseases specialist Anthony Fauci 18 questions about the COVID pandemic: from what works to counter vaccine hesitancy to whether life will even return to the normal we knew before COVID-19.

COVID crash course: A walkthrough of everything you need to know about viruses, variants...

COVID variants are new versions of the virus that are smarter at surviving. But before we can understand what these changed forms mean for vaccines, we first need to go back to the basics. We take you through the evolution of the virus and what this means for your body’s defences.

A ban on boosters: Why richer countries should wait for others to catch up...

Rich countries are already beginning to look at possibly rolling out booster shots of COVID vaccines. Causing the World Health Organisation to call for a ban on these programmes until September in order to give poorer countries a chance to catch up in their search for sufficient doses.

How do vaccines work when you have HIV or cancer? Three questions answered

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Why should you wait for two weeks after a flu jab before getting vaccinated for COVID, and is it safe to get a shot if you have a weak immune system? We break it down.

Getting COVID after being vaccinated can happen — but it’s rare. Here’s what we...

Vaccines help to reduce the spread of COVID, but they are not without shortcomings. Here’s what they can and can’t do.

Why we can’t afford to leave migrants out of our COVID-19 vaccine roll-out

Excluding refugees, asylum seekers and undocumented people in public health programmes is likely to have far-reaching implications for global COVID vaccination roll-outs.

The 30-day rule: Why you have to wait for a vaccine if you’ve recently...

Scientists know that people who have had COVID still benefit from getting vaccinated with at least one shot of vaccine. But can you get vaccinated while you have COVID?

Curbing COVID in children: Why it’s safe to reopen schools

Children have not been the drivers of COVID-19 in South Africa, but data monitored since the beginning of the pandemic shows that the likelihood of infection, disease or death among them generally increases with age.
Adrian Ephraim decided to go cold turkey

How to end tobacco use for good: What SA’s COVID tobacco ban has taught...

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Local tobacco companies’ market share quadrupled during the country’s temporary sales ban in 2020, overtaking Big Tobacco’s pre-ban monopoly on South Africa’s tobacco industry.

Half of KZN patients have no chronic medication. Here’s how looting affected SA’s COVID...

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Vaccines were stolen and many urban vaccine sites had to close as Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal erupted into chaos this past week. The biggest loss however is not vaccines, but the chronic medicines that were looted leaving those with HIV, cancer and diabetes without their medication.