JOHANNESBURG – Health Minister Joe Phaahla has issued the call for South Africans to approach their closest public health facilities so they can get COVID-19 vaccine boosters.
Phaahla was updating the media on Thursday on a few health-related matters.
He said that while the number of COVID-19 cases remained low, the country still continued to record deaths linked to the virus on a weekly basis.
As of 7 December the cumulative number of #COVID19 cases identified in SA is 4 042 912 with 1 761 new cases reported. 86 deaths have been reported bringing the total to 102 550 deaths. The cumulative number of recoveries now stand at 3 930 985 with a recovery rate of 97,2% pic.twitter.com/TFGijoMELc
Department of Health (@HealthZA) December 8, 2022
South Africa has administered 38 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines so far.
Minister Phaahla said that they were still hoping to reach 70% of the country’s population.
He, however, raised concerns that there appeared to be a low appetite for vaccine boosters.
But he encouraged South Africans to make use of the available vaccines.
“We still have sufficient numbers of vaccines, both Pfizer and J&J, we still have in stock… they should go,” the minister said.
Phaahla said that they believed that the Omicron variant had enabled the country to achieve high levels of immunity.
He said, however, that it was still important to get vaccinated because natural immunity as a result of the Omicron variant could not be guaranteed to last over time.