South Africa’s health ministry said that the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) covid-19 vaccine will be used for health workers as the start of mass immunization. On Wednesday, a consignment of the shots arrived in the country, Bloomberg News has learned.
South Africa received an unspecified number of the J&J anti-virus drug overnight and is in talks to procure an additional 20 million doses. So far, the local regulator has approved only J&J’s vaccine.
In Cape Town, the inoculation started at 1200 pm on Wednesday, said Glenda Gray, the National Medical Research Council Chief Executive Officer.
“Health teams worked overnight to distribute the vaccines to most parts throughout the country,” South African Medical Research Council Chief Executive Officer Glenda Gray said in an interview with broadcaster SAfm.
The African nation has recorded more than 1.49 million covid cases, the most in the continent. As of mid-February, a total of 48,313 people have succumbed to the novel pathogen, the South Africa Health Ministry said Tuesday.