NEWS & ANALYSIS

Better organisation needed for vaccine rollout in Gauteng – Jack Bloom

DA MPL says there was unsafe crowding at Steve Biko Hospital as more than 1 000 nurses and doctors queued

Better organisation needed for vaccine rollout in Gauteng

22 February 2021

It is highly disappointing that the vaccination of health workers degenerated into chaos this past Sunday as hundreds queued for hours at the Steve Biko Hospital, and the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital did not even open for vaccinations.

There was confusion and unsafe crowding at the Steve Biko Hospital as more than 1000 nurses and doctors queued there yesterday after receiving messages that they had been registered to receive the vaccine.

Gauteng has received 16 800 Johnson & Johnson doses, but these are currently only being administered at two public hospitals.

It is inexcusable that no vaccinations were done on Sunday at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital despite earlier promises in this regard. Every day is precious in rolling out the vaccine as soon as possible.

It also appears that priority was not always given to those health workers who deal directly with Covid-19 patients rather than other medical fields.

The vaccine fiasco this weekend highlights the urgent need for more vaccine rollout sites, including the private health sector.

It is not practical for thousands of health workers to take time off during the week from their busy hospitals to go to only two vaccination sites in the province.

I hope that teething problems with the vaccine rollout are sorted out soon and that multiple options are made available to assist health workers who work in the most risky positions.

Issued by Jack Bloom,DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health, 22 February 2021