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Achieving a vaccination rate of 70% to 80% of adults is crucial

Access must improve and people must be incentivised.
Image: Supplied

We need to be absolutely focused on achieving a vaccination rate of 70% to 80% of adults. Countries with that level of vaccinations have seen hospitalisation and death rates drop dramatically, even as infections continue in waves. That is what we need confidence to return so that lockdowns are behind us and businesses can focus on rebuilding the economy. The urgency for us to do so was reinforced by the dreadful unemployment figures of last week.

Read: SA unemployment is far worse than a bloodbath

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I applaud the Department of Health (DoH) for administering an average of 240 000 vaccine jabs last week, a rate higher than countries such as Israel and the United Kingdom that have achieved high levels of penetration [although the former is now issuing booster shots]. There, businesses are open and life has pretty much returned to normal. The DoH’s progress is a confidence boost for us in that that we are [hopefully] making progress towards that outcome ourselves.

The high figures last week were driven by opening vaccinations to everyone over 18. That will have caused a spike and we need to do everything we can to maintain the vaccination rate. There are two key measures needed to do so: improving access and incentivising people to be vaccinated.

Access is going to become increasingly difficult as the programme continues – South Africa has many hard-to-reach areas. The DoH is already using mobile vaccination units and these are going to become increasingly important to ensure comprehensive access.

The issue of incentives of course is controversial. Unlike other countries, South Africa does not make any vaccines compulsory, including obvious life-saving vaccines such as measles in children. Globally things are quite different. France, for example, forbids children without measles vaccines from attending public schools. Those who travel in Africa know that yellow fever vaccine certificates are necessary to access many countries. The Covid vaccine is already being treated like a passport – it is now difficult to travel internationally without being vaccinated. But it is going beyond travel – evidence of vaccination is now a requirement to access restaurants or large-scale public events from New York to Greece.

Any such measures would require that our vaccination programme provides reliable proof of vaccination for those who have received their jabs. A simple verification technique, preferably in line with global digital standards that have now been established, is key.

This is a matter of giving people access to their own health data and should be straightforward policy-wise.

It is important that the government facilitate this.

Public policy can drive some level of vaccine incentives, but the private sector can do so too. Many employers have led the charge in supporting employees to access vaccines. Some employers can make vaccination mandatory where their employees are exposed to the public (like restaurants) or work in close contact with each other. Businesses also have the right to control access – just as they can insist employees who are exposed to the public are vaccinated, they can insist that customers who are exposed to their employees or each other are vaccinated. As the vaccine programme continues, I expect to see businesses becoming more strident in requiring vaccination both from their customers and employees.

There will of course be lots of ideological contestation about such measures.

Those who refuse to be vaccinated may well proclaim that is their right, but it is also the right of the rest of us to protect ourselves from the risks posed by unvaccinated people, and to do whatever we can to reach the overall vaccination rates necessary for life to go back to normal.

Moving beyond all lockdown restrictions is one critical component to the wider effort to drive an economic recovery, one that is going to start to turn around the unemployment trend, reignite economic growth and start to heal the damaged financial position of the state. There are other important components, such as the structural reforms that business and government have been working hard to deliver. These are among many steps that need to be taken.

But I feel positive that we are moving in the right direction, both on the vaccine programme and the economic policy changes needed. We all have a responsibility to maintain this momentum and getting ourselves vaccinated is the minimum we can do.

Busi Mavuso is CEO Business Leadership South Africa.

COMMENTS   31

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Why must is it crucial? Look at Israel which is introducing 3rd and 4th jabs and green pass is now expiring after 6 months.

Your life is never going back to normal, never ever

Fully agree — If there is one nation that have all the medical facts about all of their population it is Israel.
They have a total handle on vaccinations, infections and hospitalizations.
There are NO “excess” deaths in this country as every death is fully backed up by a post mortem!!
Agree – Life as we know it has changed profoundly forever !!

3rd world war from China

The world and the universe is in a constant state of flux. Until you die …

I have been vaccinated, but agree fully. I can see the benefit to me personally, but not for the country. Even Prof Madhi says SA will never reach herd immunity. So why, exactly, is it crucial? Will lock-downs stop? Nope. Will mask wearing go away? Nope. Will we need new vaccines every year? Yes. So what’s the point of this for the country?

the point is to virtue signal.

A bit like voting… whether you do or don’t, the ANC is going win again.

“Those who travel in Africa know that yellow fever vaccine certificates are necessary to access many countries” other countries too however that jab has been around for a long long time and tried and trusted and not under EUA (Emergency Use Authorisation)

The Pfizer vaccine has full FDA approval if the EUA was the only thing holding you back.

No. The current one is still under EUA and the approved one, Comirnaty, is not available yet.

Its just the name, they are identical.
We couldn’t call a vaccine the name of a company forever.

Still under EUA, look at the document and trials go on until 2024

I expected this “one size fits all” approach from the government, not from the private sector. Surely our approach needs to be more nuanced than this based on the new information…

And yes, it is the right of someone to take the vaccine or not, same as abortion-nobody has the right to deny that by mandating vaccines. Should business continue pushing this, they may find the saying, “get woke, go broke,” holds true as customers direct their Rands towards businesses that respect the rights people were born with.

Search the internet for “130+ Doctors” and read the letter that these brave medical people have delivered to their government. They will all be facing severe retribution for putting their names to that letter. That fact in itself should be all the condemnation needed to bury the abusers of political power and their money grabbing motives. The people that should have the loudest voice have been silenced and replaced by media propaganda and self-righteous idiots.

Coronavirus is a type pf flue virus. There will be new strains every year. Covid inoculation will become an annual event. We will line up at the pharmacy for our combined flue jab.

This entire covid madness and lockdown measures frustrated the hell out of me. For my own sanity, I decided to join them if I cannot beat them. The covid madness can be quite rewarding for the owners of Pfiser and Moderna. I incentivised myself to embrace the stupidity and overreaction in response to the virus. The blood pressure goes down as the share prices rise. This anti-covid stupidity therapy is even more effective than red wine.

Majority of men are scared of needles. I saw one shaking like a jelly while the wife took it like somebody just touched her.

Crucial for a problem where there’s a 99% recovery ratio???>> Sheeple

@Zokey. Do you know what happens to the one sheep that doesn’t follow the other sheep. IT DIES!

With a +90% recovery rate and me not even having a common cold since March 2020 why would I all of a sudden expose myself to this jabbbbing. Sorry for all the b’s but it gives me the willies.

Perhaps it is because people do not die within a couple of days of catching a common cold or spend weeks on a ventilator because of the sniffles.

And it is not only about you.

That is the point…it IS about me. I am the individual deciding whether I will expose my body to an experiment. These vaccines are only about a year old, and therefore it’s long term effects have not been tested. Read 12 (2) of the bill of rights:
12 (2) Everyone has the right to bodily and psychological integrity, which includes the
right—
(b) to security in and control over their body; and
(c) not to be subjected to medical or scientific experiments without their informed consent.

the vaccines only limit your own symptoms. data is coming out thick and fast that it doesn’t reduce your ability to get or spread it. So this decision is entirely about ‘you’. make your decision, then leave everyone else alone.

So your “human rights” take preference over the established fact that although you may have survived the COVID-19 infection while unvaccinated, like my 44 year old daughter and her partner, the 39 year old pregnant mother, daughter of my son-in-law’s employee who had to have an induced birth a month before due date because of the virus, and died a week later did not.

So the vaccines are just another profit making scam by “big pharma” – but you drive a car powered by “big oil” and you bank with “big money”.

So you won’t wear a mask because you can’t exercise efficiently with it? Ask surgeons how they cope during a 6 hour intensive operation.

So you think that all you may need at worst is a few days in hospital? While you take up the bed space of a child dying of cancer or road accident victims?

The Spanish and Portuguese who invaded South America carried the viruses which wiped out some 50 million indigenous peoples. But you won’t learn from history because you know better than a virologist who spent 10 years qualifying?

Because you follow an “expert” on Facebook or Twitter? Do you actually realise just how much of an idiot you are?

Obviously not.

To add; The same lot who complains that they don’t want the vaccine, as they “don’t know what’s in it”, have been munching away at Vienna’s and McNuggets for years.

Yip! And then taking up even more hospital beds in the cardiac ward.

I’ve had covid. it was mild. mandated annual boosters shots are not the answer. Keep pushing your authoritarianism but don’t be surprised when you push too far and someone snaps because they can’t work, travel or buy groceries because they haven’t had some medical procedure. We have rights for a reason.

Simple math worldwide cases 217 Million. Deaths 4.51 million= 0.0207 death rate and they want everyone vaccinated???? In South Africa the flu death rate is 4%. Why isn’t everyone mandatorily vaxed?????? Let’s look at the side effects, the people unemployed, suicide rates, and business shut down?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

My goodness even your math is bad, you need to multiply that 0.0207 with 100 to get the percentage.

Also care to share the source of that bold 4% death rate for the flu?

Your figures is for those cases that have been identified. You need to add to the divider those that did not have symptoms then the % is much, much lower.

While she happily bleats the propaganda, let’s tie everyone getting jabbed with other impossibilities to incentivise the vaccination process.

e.g. I’ll get jabbed the day they bring the Guptas back for trial. (Or Bushiris)

Or I’ll get jabbed the day the ANC big-jobs sell their jeeps & Aston Martins to pay their employees salaries.

Bollocks. It is not crucual at all. TB kills far more people. Never seen any such measures against that. This vaccination is crucial for big pharma and their government cronies that will be cashing in for decades to come, yes

End of comments.

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