Cape Town – Health workers (HCWs) continue to line up at vaccination sites eagerly waiting to be vaccinated against Covid-19.
For many healthcare workers, the timing could not have come sooner, as they feel a little more protected against Covid-19, while working on the front lines.
The provincial health department received its first batch of 13,160 Johnson & Johnson vaccines last week, and at 5 p.m. Monday administered 3,956 vaccines.
As of 1 p.m. on February 23, the Western Cape had 4,269 active Covid-19 infections, with a total of 274,191 confirmed cases of Covid-19 and 258,839 recoveries.
Vaccinations were given daily at Groote Schuur and Tygerberg hospitals, with the Khayelitsha district hospital occasionally adding to the tally.
The ministry said the immunization program was the largest to date and would continue to monitor the process and resolve any start-up issues.
As she stood in line to get the vaccine at Groote Schuur Hospital, TS, Yvonne Jaftha, said that although slightly nervous, she was happy to be part of the vaccination program.
Said Coralie Snell, a health worker at Groote Schuur Hospital, who also works in UCT clinical trials in the dialysis unit: “I was waiting (for the vaccine) until they said we could. get it. So Monday was D-Day for me. I am very happy. Thank God I understand, I am grateful.
“For healthcare workers, it’s great because, in addition to being a prevention, it’s good that everyone gets vaccinated. I believe in it – immunity and also to protect patients. Hopefully this will reduce the spread of Covid-19. I think it’s going to be great.
Shortly after receiving the vaccine, Mitchell’s Plain Hospital doctor Dr Adam Khan said, “It’s very good, I’m so glad I was vaccinated.”
About how he felt before he got the shot, he said: “Mostly just strong anticipation, a bit of nerves just beforehand, but mostly excitement.
Groote Schuur Hospital CEO Dr Bhavna Patel urged people to continue to adhere to non-pharmaceutical prevention measures such as hand washing, physical distancing and wearing masks. “… What this vaccine does, it really only protects against serious illness and hospitalizations, it won’t stop you from contracting Covid-19.”
“It’s an important message. There doesn’t have to be that rush now in the first round for everyone; we try to focus on the most vulnerable staff in emergency units, trauma units, Covid-19 services, staff with chronic illnesses or older staff. “
Groote Schuur hospital carried out the most vaccinations per day with 1,890 vaccinated on Sunday and more than 400 on Monday. Tygerberg Hospital vaccinated 777 and Khayelitsha District Hospital 89 on Sunday.
The vaccine must first thaw and then be aspirated, and must be administered within two hours, otherwise it will expire.
Healthcare workers are urged to register on the national EVDS registration portal, after which they will be given a vaccination site and an expected date for vaccination.