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Why you should get vaccinated

It’s important to get 250 000 unvaccinated people to pitch up every workday till the end of the year to avoid the infection numbers seen in the second and third Covid waves: David Harrison – Vaccination Demand Task Team Lead, Department of Health.

FIFI PETERS: AME (African Media Entertainment), which is the holding company for a lot of media companies including Moneyweb, has partnered with the Department of Health to try and encourage more South Africans to get vaccinated. David Harrison, who is part of the Vaccination Demand Task Team at the Department of Health is joining the SAfm Market Update right now to speak more about why you should be vaccinated.

David, thanks so much for your time. Just talk to us about how the Department of Health is managing vaccine hesitancy and some of the negative feedback that you are receiving around the Covid-19 vaccine.

DAVID HARRISON: Well, thank you very much and thanks so much for having me on the show, and for the commitment of AME and Caxton to partner with the department. You know, reporting that we don’t have the degree of rigid resistance to vaccination that we have in many other countries – in the United States and some countries in Europe – we’re up to a third to even half of people won’t get vaccinated.

When we think about vaccine hesitancy in South Africa, I think it’s useful for us to think that, based on a number of surveys, we know that about three out of six people are likely to come forward just if we give them the right information and ensure that sites are open close to them. One in six is resistant to vaccination, and it’s going to take time to convince them. Another two out of six of are the people on the fence. They’re the swing voters, and we really believe that that’s where we need to invest most of our efforts in getting them over the line. We’ve intensified that effort over the last month.

I’ve been brought in to lead the Demand Acceleration Task Team, and I think the most important thing we can do is ensure a constant stream of truthful, factual information, both because that takes away a lot of the anxiety that makes people distrustful or open to conspiracy theories, and because it provides them the basic information they need to go and get vaccinated.

So we have a number of teams around the country, both on the ground and listening in on social media, doing what we call social listening, hearing people’s anxieties, uncovering the myths, and we will use the information that we glean to shape our public communication in partnership with GCIS (the Government Communication and Information System) and many, many other partners in civil society, unions and business.

FIFI PETERS: You’re right, because there is a lot of fake news out there that has contributed to some degree of hesitancy to go and get the jab. But how are you ensuring that the message lands, because I think that among ideas that have been brought onto the table is ensuring that the communication is also done in languages that people understand. Have you taken the messaging that far to tailor it to people’s understanding?

DAVID HARRISON: Yes. Just to give you a sense – and it’s been a great partnership with the Pepkor group of companies – we’ve managed to distribute 10 million leaflets in all 11 languages across the country through the Department of Health, and another 10 million through Pep Stores and Shoe City and Ackermans. We’ve ramped up communication in all 11 languages and radio stations. It’s certainly seeking to keep building out those type of work relationships.

The bottom line is that ultimately people will go and get vaccinated if their neighbour has been vaccinated, or if they hear it from somebody whom they trust.

Frankly, I think we’ve done too much national talking and we’ve relied too much on simply political leadership to do the talking. A lot of our focus over the last month has been to really drive communication down into communities and to use the networks that people trust – to use faith-based leadership, civil society leadership, the unions and the local business sector. Those are the primary points of contact and the primary points of intersection with people in a way that that can’t be achieved simply through national media.

So that’s really our focus over the next few months – and using local radio, using community newspapers is a critical part of that strategy.

FIFI PETERS: David, take us through some of the guidelines when it comes to vaccinating in the workplace.

DAVID HARRISON: Well, for vaccination in the workplace to happen, the occupational health site has to be officially registered with the Department of Health. Government has worked very closely with the business sector to try and expand the number of occupational health services through the workplace.

The reality is that we haven’t had as many workplace sites as we would’ve hoped. We’ve now about 120 workplace sites. But I think the encouraging thing now is that we are starting to see many companies saying that they willing to vaccinate not only their employees, but people in the surrounding communities as well. And here mining companies are at the fore.

This is really great. It could be really instrumental in an area like a Boitumelo ? ……5:53 Platinum, where at the moment we still have low uptake. We still have a million people unvaccinated in that district alone. This is a fantastic opportunity based on the commitment of these mining companies to, to go into surrounding communities, to link up with local labour and with the local Department of Health and try and crack this challenge in a place like Boitumelo […… ?].

FIFI PETERS: We’ve also seen one or two companies announcing that vaccines will be mandatory for their staff. What’s national government’s thinking of this and the potential economic implications of such a move?

DAVID HARRISON: Government has made it very clear that from a public point of view, from a government point of view, there won’t be use of mandatory vaccination to exclude people from any public service. That’s clear, but they’re also saying that if companies want to introduce mandatory vaccinations and require their staff, for example, to have mandatory vaccinations, they accept that.

I understand that. I think if you have companies that are client-facing, that are really serious about enhancing their overall workplace wellbeing, it absolutely makes sense for everybody to be vaccinated. Of course, we do have a large informal sector, we have high unemployment rates, so on its own that sort of policy is unlikely to affect viral ……7:28? dynamics.

But I think it does send a strong signal to everyone in South Africa that Covid vaccination must become a routine part of life because it makes economic, it makes social, it makes family sense.

FIFI PETERS: I agree with you. But then I think that we also need to be a bit sensitive around those who for their own reasons are still sitting on the fence when it comes to vaccines, and members who could be part of labour unions – and the potential backlash that we could see there as a result of companies making vaccines mandatory. Has the government thought about this and thought about what the possible response could be?

DAVID HARRISON: Again, just to be clear, the government is not promoting mandatory vaccination. It’s certainly understanding that companies may well choose to do that. I completely agree that this is not going to be the primary way of driving demand, and we do need to be careful that we don’t create a negative backlash. In terms of the unions we’ve taken notes of Amcu’s concerns. But I must say overall in our engagement with unions we’re working very closely with the unions through union mobilisers.

We’ve received a lot of support for an endorsement for the for national vaccination programme, and I think in the next two weeks we’re going to see a heightened declaration, a clarity of leadership emerging – not only from unions, but civil society and the business sector as well – in a way that we haven’t seen before.

FIFI PETERS: David, as we head towards the end of the year, just take us through the latest vaccination strategy for South Africa. What is the status there?

DAVID HARRISON: Right now about 30% of the adult population has had at least one dose. We don’t know when the fourth wave is going to hit, but it’s probably going to be, unfortunately, just around Christmas time as we enter the new year. So it’s absolutely critical that we vaccinate another 16 million people who haven’t yet come forward, so that we achieve about a 70% coverage in the adult population before the end of the year.

If we were to achieve that, we would avert probably about 20 000 deaths, so that’s what we have to gear up to do. We need to ensure that we continue to expand access. We have now about 3 000 sites across both the public and private sector. We have to drive demand up. From next weekend there’s going to be an accelerated commitment, a political commitment driven by the president to drive up public demand, and we’re hoping to sustain that before the end of the year.

We need to ensure that 250 000 people – that’s a quarter of a million people – who haven’t been vaccinated before pitch up every single workday between now and the end of the year for vaccination. That’s the type of numbers that we’re going to require if we are going to ensure that we don’t have the same sort of situations we had in the second and third waves.

FIFI PETERS: And tomorrow’s a public holiday. Just talk to us about open doors for those who wants to get a jab tomorrow and over this long weekend.

DAVID HARRISON: There are sites that that are open over weekends and on public holidays – public and private sites. Next weekend we’re going to be seeing a commitment from all public and private sites to stay open for the entire Saturday so that we can start to accelerate vaccination over the weekends. We know from the sites that are open over the weekends that people do come there. So starting to ensure that we make this a six-day project and not a five-day project a week is crucial if we’re going to achieve our targets.

FIFI PETERS: Alright. David, thanks so much for joining us and debunking some of those myths and misperceptions around the Covid-19 vaccine. That was David Harrison, the Vaccination Demand Task Team lead for the Department of Health.


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There is really only one reason to get vaccinated: to protect yourself. I have had my 2 shots but I am under no illusion that that will do anything to prevent the planned and scheduled 4th wave in December, a wave deliberately designed to maximize the opportunity for certain members of the unelected Command Council to benefit from her smuggler connections over the Festive Season. Who knows; perhaps the ANC regime too needs the smuggling and tender income to pay salaries?

But one thing is certain: more than 540 days after the alleged 21-day first lock-down, it is patently clear that it was never about the virus at all. It is even clearer that anybody who believes that any number of vaccinations will lead to the end of the moronic lock-downs, is delusional.

Harrison say’s he does not know when the fourth wave will hit, only that it will be around the Christmas holidays. He should speak to Salim Abdool Karim who on 17/08/21 stated, “South Africa expects a fourth wave of coronavirus infections to start on Dec. 2 and to last about 75 days”.
I mentioned how ridiculous this is in an earlier comment that was censored. One question that needs to be asked of the MSM is why is no counterpoint contrary to the mainstream Covid messaging allowed? What are they afraid of?
South Africa has returned to apartheid-era censorship, which does dovetail with the new method of segregation that government is condoning. Corporate’s were forced to segregate under apartheid, now they do it willingly.

I think we are kidding ourselves if we think our people are pro vaccination or making an effort to get vaccinated. Among middle and upper classes, sure, most are eager and have sorted themselves. Not so in poorer and less educated.

The rush to get vaccinated is over, authorities will need to spoon-feed or use stick : vaccinate at grant offices

The censorship is strong today Moneyweb! Socrates and Spinoza would not have stood a chance with you.
“Where there is much desire to learn, there of necessity will be much arguing, much writing, many opinions; for opinion in good men is but knowledge in the making” John Milton.

But since South Africa is no longer a democracy as there has been no legislative debate for almost two years now, I guess this is the “New Normal”.
John Locke “who takes away the freedom [of legislative debate], or hinders the acting of the legislative in its due seasons, in effect takes away the legislative, and puts an end to the government”

From this whole infomercial, I am assuming the govt fund to cover medical costs for the side-effects (like Guillain-Barré Syndrome, fatal blood clots) has now been established?

Guess not. On your own. Thanks, no thanks then.

So the side effects of CV19 doesn’t matter to you? The facts that your vulnerable family member who is three times more likely to get it from you if you’re unvaccd than if you’re vaccd and >10 times more likely to die if he/she is unvaccd than unvaccd don’t matter to you? Long term side effects of CV19 (including death) are much worse than vacc side effects. I can’t understand the vaccine hesitancy among educated South Africans. How did antivax become mainstream, and how did vaccines get politicised?

Statistics is it? Let us go to the CDC & check your numbers then. 18% effectiveness after 6 months. For the ‘recently’ vaccinated (not the 6 month later) – fatality rate 0.2%, unvaccinated 0.4%. So with an 18% effectiveness you have a 0.32% chance of dying instead of a 0.4% chance.

10x more likely to die? I see you & raise you a Jacob Creutzfeldt Disease.

Forgive me for not panicking about the disease, rather the engineered ‘cure’

10 years in BioPharma say you should be worried

Find out the difference between Relative Risk Reduction and Absolute Risk Reduction, do your own research, you don’t rely on the mafia to tell you the crime rate do you.
Pharma uses Relative Risk Reduction as it looks better.

If the ANC government tells you to get vaccinated – do so. After all the brilliant ANC government knows what they are doing…

What does Harrison think about results from Israel?

No sorry, the vaning effects of the mRNA vaccines show a lot is not understood on the effect on the inmune system and human body.

A vaccine is supposed to innoculate a person against infection and stop transmission

ISRAEL television: 90% of those newly infected yesterday over 60 years are vaccinated with two doses, and the other 10% are vaccinated with a single dose or without vaccination.

in contrast, in the US where the majority are vaccinated data from 40 states and Washington, D.C., shows:

Fully vaccinated people have made up as few as 0.1 percent of and as many as 5 percent of those hospitalized with the virus in those states, and as few as 0.2 percent and as many as 6 percent of those who have died.

That is large data set

Another study in US has unvaccinated 17times more of people admitted to hospital. So call it 95% of admitted are unvaccinated.

Locally, Grote Schuur hospital reported 99% of admissions not vaccinated.

The reason for this apparent skewness in the split between vaccinated/unvaccinated cases, is that more cases are fraudulently counted as unvaccinated.

Admissions to hospital are only counted as vaccinated as from the 15th day after vaccination. The reasoning behind this is that vaccines take at least 14 days to kick in.

Most adverse reactions show up very soon after vaccination, say 3 or 4 days. If the patient is admitted to hospital within the first 14 days after vaccination, the case is counted as unvaccinated.

A friend of mine lost his wife due to adverse reactions from the vaccine. She fell ill 3 days after vaccination, and was admitted to hospital at 11 days after vaccination. She died 22 days after vaccination. Her death was recorded as Covid-19 related, with an unvaccinated status.

Wow you got another point there.

Mr Harrison? What happened there?

Yes, Israel has been an outlier. Case fatality rate only halved in last wave – reduction was not nearly as significant as in UK for example. Reasons include: Israel gave first two doses very close together (better efficacy with 6 rather than 3 weeks between jabs), Israel started off very early compared with other countries (and efficacy wanes especially when first two jabs were close together together), Israel’s vaccination rate is not very high (many other European countries now have higher coverage), Delta variant, absence of mask mandate until it was too late to stop Delta spread, other population specific dynamics could also have played a part

Sounds like a big ongoing experiment.

How about the other vaccines? Check Sputnik in Argentina, it seems to work better than the most punted.

Perhaps signs the older type of vaccine using attenuated virus is more effective than mRNA?

Comment held for moderation…

Only MSM theme allowed in MW

End of comments.



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