Buy-in to solidarity is key to successful vaccine rollout

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Buy-in to solidarity is key to successful vaccine rollout

The task is mammoth and to get it done requires a decisive, fast, coordinated effort and wide support

Dr Gugu Ngubane

Vaccines have been saving lives for centuries. SA has been immunising children for decades and now the World Health Organisation (WHO) lists 28 diseases that are preventable through vaccination. Covid-19 will be the 29th. The difference with Covid-19, however, is that never before have nations been required to vaccinate whole populations, across the globe, at the same time and as quickly as possible. That’s the challenge.

The Solidarity Fund was set up as an agile, rapid-response vehicle to support and act as an additive to the department of health’s response to the pandemic. As such, the fund is guided by the priorities laid out and managed by the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC). The priority now is the roll-out of vaccines to the majority of the population so we can reach herd immunity, reduce the severity of the disease for those infected, and reduce hospitalisations and deaths.

Vaccination roll-out, however, is a mammoth task, with unprecedented and multiple challenges. From sourcing and acquiring vaccines to administering them across the country, the logistics of an effective roll-out are complicated. They say it takes a village to raise a child. Well, it will take a village to move the vaccine roll-out from baby steps to running. It is gratifying that the village is coming out in full force...

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