Today's Labour News

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healthcareBusinessLive reports that almost two-thirds of healthcare workers in the Sisonke Covid-19 vaccine trial, one of the world’s biggest, have not yet taken booster shots, and they only have 10 working days to do so.

But, they will be at the forefront of SA’s fourth wave of infections, as the highly transmissible Omicron variant drives up SA’s caseload. When the first phase of the Sisonke trial ended in May, almost 500,000 of SA’s healthcare workers had received a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. But uptake among the same cohort has lagged in rural provinces, especially since the trial’s booster phase began in early November. As of Saturday, only 183,539 of the 496,424 original participants had come forward. Most participants — including those exposed to the most severe cases of Covid-19 through their work — have abstained from the free intervention to enhance their immunity. Trial participants who have taken a booster shot account for only 37% of the Sisonke trial group. The highest tally of those boosted were in Gauteng, followed by the Western Cape. Uptake has been poorest in SA’s rural provinces, which has those monitoring the study worried. Glenda Gray, president of the SA Medical Research Council (SAMRC), urged hospital CEOs and provincial health MECs in seven of SA’s nine provinces to ensure those involved in the implementation study take boosters. It is possible the second leg of the trial, set to end on 17 December, will be extended if booster shot uptake is inadequate.

  • Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Erin Bates at BusinessLive

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