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Covid-19: the good news edition

First up: we’re back to Level 3 and alcohol is back on the shelves, plus your kids can go back to school. Phew! 💉

Secondly, the over-35 cohort has been flocking to vaccination sites even though they’re only officially eligible from 1 August. Registration for the 35-49 group opened on 15 July and most centres have been accepting them for appointments or walk-ins since then! Meanwhile, those over 18 are next in line! 

It’s easy to forget just how impossible getting a vaccine looked a few months ago. We were dogged by headlines about failed negotiations between government and big pharma and one roadblock after the other. 

Timelines have shifted up by nearly two months: people aged 40 and above would originally only have started getting their vaccines in September, but this cohort became eligible for the jab in July instead! 

Other measures point to how things have sped up. Government initially aimed to have 40 million vaccinated by March 2022. Now it looks like we’ll reach that milestone sooner – the new goal is 35 million people vaccinated by Christmas. 

But, being pessimistic South Africa, we haven’t really celebrated this positive development. 

About 7 million South Africans have been vaccinated to date, over 250 000 people are being vaccinated daily, and the Aspen facility in Gqeberha is ready to release the first, fully completed J&J vaccines.

It’s more than a lot of countries can say: Australia had the means and clout to secure vaccines but did not do so fast enough and is behind on its programme, while the US is trying to bribe large swathes of its vaccine sceptic population with cash and lottery tickets!

Speaking of scepticism, it’s okay if you’re a little hesitant or worried about how the vaccine will affect your body. It is your choice, but it comes with a warning label: the fewer people vaccinated, the greater the likelihood of new variants popping up, because the virus will continue to spread, which we would hate to see. So, before refusing the jab, research it. 😉

This article appeared as part of The Wrap, 29 July 2021. Sign up to receive our weekly updates.