The Democratic Alliance (DA) in the Western Cape has welcomed the Health Department’s Rural District “Roadshow” to assess the readiness for the second phase of the vaccination process, but still echoed concerns regarding the rollout.
According to a statement by the DA’s Health spokesperson, Wendy Philander, there is a great concern that the province is yet to receive the bulk of vaccines needed for phase two, as it was initially expected during mid-April.
” We must keep in mind that the national government is responsible for distributing vaccines to provinces, and provincial health departments can only ensure jabs take place once in receipt of vaccines, ” Philander said.
The new arrival date has now been communicated as 17 May 2021.
Philander explained the roadshow indicates that the province’s systems are in place to begin the second phase of the roll-out and that it would cover all areas of the Western Cape.
“We have seen that vaccines are of great benefit to the health of workers in our system, so it is disappointing that we have yet to receive the vaccines to cover our entire human resource component in the health sector.”
Philander added, the provincial Department of Health has indicated that they would be able to administer 30 000 jabs per day, which is in line with targets set by the national government to reach population immunity.
” The Department has already utilised R980 000 to train vaccinators and that this could be extended to more vaccinators where necessary, at no further cost to taxpayers, ” Philander added.
Meanwhile, Western Cape Premier Alan Winde said the number of healthcare workers infected with COVID-19 has continued to drop “sharply” in the province.
“In December 2020, during the height of the second wave, over 1 971 healthcare workers were infected with the virus. This dropped to its lowest level since the pandemic started in March last year, with just 38 infections last month,” Winde added.
As of April 9, the Western Cape has 2 187 active COVID-19 infections with a total of 281 231 confirmed cases and 267 548 recoveries.
Picture: Cape Town etc gallery