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Editor-in-chief: @bhekisisa_MG. Email: miam@bhekisisa.org. Subscribe to our newsletter: https://t.co/z8Xyzi2e60
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22 Sep
[Thread] 1. What is the average nr of daily #COVID19 #vaccine doses #VaccineRollOutSA now administers (average = past 7 days)?
167, 041 doses

Is it lower than last week's average?
Yes, 21, 677 doses fewer (188,718 average)

Data: the fabulous @outlierafrica of @mediahackza
2. What % of adults has SA fully vaccinated so far? 20.2% (8.1 mil adults)

What % of the entire population has SA fully vaccinated so far? 13.4%
3. How long will it take to fully vaccinate the remaining % of adults = 40 mil people?

(@healthza's goal = 35 mil doses by Dec, take note: doses, not people):

1. With #JnJ only: 6 mnths 13 days (1 jab needed @ this stage)
2. With #Pfizer only: 12 mnths 4 days (2 jabs needed)
Read 6 tweets
21 Sep
NEW: [Thread] 1. #JnJ 2day announced (via a press release: bit.ly/3AFFCu0):
1. JnJ's #COVID19 jab = more effective when given as a double shot, 56 days - 6 mnths apart (vs. just 1 shot)
2. The efficacy of 1 shot doesn't wane, but a booster shot makes it more effective.
2. When a 2nd #JnJ shot is given 56 days after the 1st one, the 2-dose combo provides:
* 100% protection @ severe #COVID19 14 days after the 2nd shot
* 75% protection @ symptomatic (moderate to severe/critical) COVID19 in the countries where the jab was tested
3. When a 2nd/booster shot of the #JnJ #COVID19 jab was given 56 days after the first shot, trial participants' antibody levels rose to 4-6x times higher than after just one shot.
Read 9 tweets
17 Sep
[Thread] 1. #Phaahla on VACCINE PASSPORTS:

1. The aim of vaccination certificates = not to punish people, but to protect each other
2. Vaccination certificates will allow SA to introduce policies to open up more activities, e.g. larger sports events, for vaccinated people
2. #Phaahla: Vaccination certificates will allow vaccinated people more access to activities than unvaccinated people. But it won't deprive unvaccinated people from accessing essential services, e.g. health clinics. You won't need certificates to access such services.
3. How will vaccination certificates be accessed?
1. A link from which you can download your certificate will be sent to your phone (you can only download it if you have a smart phone)
2. Your vaccination site will be able to print you a certificate
Read 7 tweets
17 Sep
[Thread] 1. #Phaahla: Vaccinations of people below 18:
1. #Pfizer has been approved for use on people of 12+
2. SA, for the next month or two, will remain focused on vaccinating people of 18+ (higher risk people)
3. Main priority = 50+ (most vulnerable) before our 4th wave
2. #Phaahla:
1. We're not ignoring the fact that #Pfizer has been approved for use by people below 18 yrs + schools want learners vaccinated
2. We're hoping by the end of Oct we will have covered enough adults to then review our policy + consider vaccinating people of below 18
3. #Phaahla:
1. @healthza believes it will be irresponsible to "start running around" vaccinating teenagers before we haven't reached enough adults (high risk group)
2. Goal = to have 50% of people of 50+ vaccinated first (currently = at 30%).
Read 4 tweets
17 Sep
[Thread] 1. #Phaahla: SA's 3rd #COVID19 wave has been considerably longer than other waves:
1. First wave = 87 days
2. Second wave = 95 days
3. Third wave (so far) = 120 days
2. #Phaahla: When compared to the previous 7 days, overall new #COVID19 cases are down by 35%. The positivity rate (the % of tests that come out +) is down by 9.5% to an average + rate of 9.3%. That brings us closer to the WHO's recommend, "safer" +rate of 5%.
3. #Phaahla: Active #COVID19 cases are going down. The WC and KZN still have the highest numbers of active cases, but they're slowly coming down.
Read 5 tweets
15 Sep
[Thread] 1. How are we doing with #JnJ supply?

Here's what @healthza says we've received so far:

4 June – 300,000 (short expiry)
21 June – 1,253,600 (short expiry)
26 July – 1,454,400
9 August – 619,200
6 September – 1,413,600
13 September – 1,360,800
TOTAL – 6,401,600
2. How many doses does #JnJ still owe us?
We procured 31.2 million doses, so:
31,200,000 - 6,401,600 = 24,798,400
3. When will the rest of our #JnJ stock arrive?

Janssen/#JnJ = given @healthza tentative delivery dates for Sep + Oct, but the dates = not public.

But the quarterly delivery schedule is public:
Q3 (July - Sep): 9,100,000 doses
Read 12 tweets
11 Sep
[Thread] 1. How much more likely is an unvaccinated person to get infected with the #DeltaVariant vs a fully vaccinated person?

A new CDC report with US data found an unvaccinated person = 5x more likely to get infected than a fully vaccinated person.

2. Where does the CDC's data come from?

* It's real life data from between
- April 4 and June 19
- June 20 - July 17
* They looked at data from 13 US states
* Jabs that fully vaccinated people received = Pfizer/Moderna (92%), JnJ (8%)
3. What did the #DeltaVariant do to the protection #COVID vaccines offer @ infection?
It reduced vaccines' protection @ infection from 91% to 78%.
Read 8 tweets
10 Sep
[Thread].1. How is Northwest province doing with #VaccineRollOutSA?
* To reach 70% of adults by Dec, NW needs to do 20 000 jabs six days/week
* Where are they now? NW is doing 13 000 jabs/week
* Biggest challenge = vaccine hesitancy
2. How many #VaccineRollOutSA sites does NW have?
* 55 fixes sites (42 public, 13 private)
* 200 outreach sites
* NW has all the required equipment and also enough staff and funds to vaccinate all adults who needs a vaccine
3. Vaccine hesitancy in NW province = biggest problem. NW hlth dpt says the graph below shows that it's particularly difficult to get people to visit sites that are open over weekends, so there are huge dips in weekend vaccination numbers.
Read 7 tweets
10 Sep
#Phaahla: [Thread] 1. BREAKING
1. In about 1 week, vaccinated SAs are likely to be issued with digital vaccination certificates
2. The certificates can be uploaded onto smart phones + will be printable
3. You can only get a certificate if your vax details = recorded on the #EVDS
2. #Phaahla: SA doesn't currently require vaccine passports for travelers coming into the country. We only require #COVID (PCR) test results not older than 72 hours.
3. #Phaahla: Digital vaccination certificates for vaccinated people in SA will:
* Protected from fraud, as far as possible
* Be in line with WHO requirements (WHO is standardising vaccine certificates for all countries to decrease the possibility of fraud)
Read 4 tweets
10 Sep
[Thread] 1. #Phaahla: There has been a 24% drop in new #COVID19 cases, compared to the previous 7 days. But the WC (23.6% of new cases), NC, FS, KZN still have relatively proportions of new cases.
2.#Phaahla: Hospitalisations = decreased by 10% vs. the previous 7 days. WC has the highest #COVID hospitalisation rate. The WC is followed by FS and GP. Cases in GP = drastically dropped, but because people take time to fall ill, hospitalisations = still high in the province.
3. Positivity rates (the % of tests coming out +) have decreased from 30% on mid-July to 12% on Thu. Gauteng has the lowest + rate = 4.4%. GP = the only province with a + rate below the WHO's recommended rate of 5%.
Read 4 tweets
9 Sep
[Thread] 1. Are fewer vaccinated than unvaccinated people of 60+ in WC being hospitalised for #COVID19 + dying of it?


1. Hospitalisations: Out of 729 admissions, 699 (96%) = unvaccinated
2. Deaths: Out of 292 deaths, 287 (98.3%) = unvaccinated.

Data: 14-20 Aug
2. Look @ the note @ the bottom of this @WestCapeHealth slide: "With thanks to Sanford Health Hospitals for concept". This is in reference to a slide with a similar template which Sanford Hospitals use for their data, which was also used to release Groote Schuur data this week.
3. #Antivaxxers falsely argued Groote Schuur Hospital data released on this template = untrue because it used a graphic that looked like Sanford Health Hospitals'. But @westerncapehealth confirmed the data as accurate + 2day released more data using a similar template.
Read 7 tweets
30 Aug
[Thread] 1. @nicd update on the new #COVID variant detected in SA.

What's the variant's name? C.1.2
When was it detected? May 2021

How do scientists detect variants? They unravel the genetic code of viruses. It's called genomic surveillance. SA has unravelled 16 000 genomes.
2. How common is C.1.2 in SA?

2.5% of the genomes that scientists sequence = currently C.1.2. Compare this to #Delta = 90%+.

The graph shows how the dominance of variants have changed over time.
Blue: Beta = 2nd wave
Green: Delta = 3rd wave
Purple: C.1.2 = emerged, 3rd wave
3. Where has C.1.2 popped up?
1. SA = Gauteng, KZN, WC, NC, LP, MP, EC
2. Africa = Botswana, DRC, Mauritius
3. Europe = Switzerland, Portugal
4. Asia = China

Diffs between SA and the other countries? C.1.2 is currently far more common in SA (but still only 2.5% of genomes).
Read 13 tweets
27 Aug
[Thread] Why has @healthza not procured vaccines other than #Pfizer and #JnJ (so a third option)?
@healthza's Nicholas Crisp:
1. There are 2 vaccines to choose from: AstraZeneca and Sinovac.
2. Both of these jabs have been approved for use by @SAHPRA1.
2. AstraZeneca:
1. We have data that it works @ the #Delta variant.
2. Availability = an issue, we're looking for a supplier with stock. Serum Institute in India = no stock. If we buy from a new manufacturer we need a certificate of good pharmaceutical practice = takes time.
3. AstraZeneca:
* @healthza hopes stock may become available at the end of Sep or Oct
Read 4 tweets
27 Aug
[Thread]. 1. The Overberg district has the highest #COVID vaccine registration rate in SA:
1. 96.7% of 60+ = registered
2. 84.5% of 60+ = vaccinated
3. What helped with success? Partnerships between the private and public sectors.
2. The Overberg district has daily meetings to identify which geographic areas have low registration rates and then specifically target those areas (example = table on the left).
3. How does Overberg convince people in areas with low vaccination registration areas to register?
1. Community workers go door to door
2. People on megaphones go into communities + read scripts that encourage people to get registered
3. Social media + WhatsApp groups
Read 7 tweets
27 Aug
[Thread] 1. #JoPhaahla: Our 3rd #COVID wave behaves differently from the 1st + 2nd wave.

How? In wave 1 + 2, new cases decreased consistently after peaks. In the 3rd wave, it's not that clear cut. The 3rd wave seems to drag on longer.
2. #JoPhaahla: In July we saw a downward trend of new #COVID cases, but on 13 Aug cases started to increase again. This was not only a national fluctuation, but could also be seen in provinces, specifically, in EC and NC.
3. #JoPhaahla: In Gauteng, there is encouraging news. There has been a sustained downward trend of new #COVID cases.
Read 8 tweets
26 Aug
[Thread]. 1. Want to use a hamburger to figure out if you can trust research data?

@Bhekisisa_MG's #JoAisha (the inseparable @vandykjoan/@A_AbdoolKarim) has done exactly this in their 4-part #SputnikSeries.

Hint: When burger ingredients join forces, each 1's role = amplified.
2. The burger patty

Ground beef is the star of the traditional burger. Its scientific equal = raw data scientists collect.

But you can’t just slap mince onto a burger. You need a binder before you can call it a patty.

In research, a study protocol (rule book) = the binder.
3. What is the #SputnikV jab?
- It's a viral vector jab (like the #JnJ jab, it uses an adenovirus to sneak an unharmful form of the #COVID virus into your body)
- You get 2 doses (they're not the same)
- Sputnik is under review by Sahpra

More here: bit.ly/3gCbOXj
Read 11 tweets
13 Aug
[Thread] 1. How many #COVIDVaccines will SA receive in Aug?
Nicholas Crisp, @healthza:
1. We no longer have a supply shortage
2. The slide below shows delivery dates + doses. It takes a week for doses to get to sites after arrival (clearance, quality testing, distribution).
2. How many adults have registered for #COVID vaccinations?
1. Registrations have been disappointing
2. 9.2 mil (out of 40 mil = 23%) adults have registered
3. 60+ = age group with the largest % registered (3.5 mil out of 5 mil = 70%)
3. Crisp:
1. Vaccinations = slowed down by SA's vaccine shortage 2 wks ago (see slide)
2. We've lost momentum: We now have enough supply, but demand has decreased
3. There will defs be a 4th wave, but we don't know when + which variant will be dominant (could be a new one)
Read 9 tweets
13 Aug
[Thread] Joe Phaahla: 1. Despite the downward trend in #COVID19SA cases, SA is still in its third wave. It's like a relay race: as cases in 1 province goes down, cases in another province take over.
2. Joe Phaahla: Cases in Gauteng are clearly down, but cases in the Western Cape have now taken over: over the last 7 days, the WC has taken the lead with the most new daily #COVID19 infections, active cases and hospitalisations.
3. Joe Phaahla: Nationally, SA's active #COVID19 cases have decreased by 7% over the past week and hospital admissions by 4.4%, so there is a little bit of relief on hospitals.
Read 5 tweets
10 Aug
JUST IN: [Thread] 1. #VaccineRollOutSA stats: Tu, 10 Aug

* 9.3 % of SA adults have been fully vaccinated @ #COVID19 (1 #JnJ jab/2 #Pfizer shots) *

1. Jabs, past 24 hrs: 176, 752 (Last Tu: 191, 721)
2. Total doses: 8, 811, 608
3. Adults fully vaccinated: 3, 719, 508 (9.3%) ImageImageImage
2. How many #JnJ shots did we do today?
Answer: 48, 246 (shots which were entered into the #EVDS, which is where @HealthZA's dashboard draws data from).

Not reflected, are the paper record doses (some sites do these), which will only be added in the coming days or weeks. Image
3. Have we used the +/- 50 000 #JnJ doses we had this morning and that will expire at 23:50 tonight (Tu)?

We don't yet officially know, but we've likely come close:
50 000 - 48, 246 = 1 754 (doses left, but these could be paper record doses not yet entered into the #EVDS).
Read 5 tweets
10 Aug
[Thread]. 1. Our first batch of 1.5 million #JnJ doses expires today (Tuesday) at 11:59pm. How many doses were left by this morning (Tuesday)?

@HealthZA says: Just under 50 000
2. Will we be able to use all of the about 50 000 #JnJ leftover doses today (Tuesday)?

Most likely — we used about 50 000 JnJ doses per day last week.
3. What happens if we can’t use all of the #JnJ doses which expire at midnight today (Tuesday)?

@HealthZA says: The doses will have to be destroyed, as they would have expired, but we won’t have to pay for unused doses.
Read 4 tweets
6 Aug
[Thread] 1. Glenda Gray, co-lead investigator, #Sisonke:

We now have results to show the #JnJ jab provides significant protection @ the #DeltaVariant in SA.

What is Sisonke?

The Sisonke study used the #JnJ jab to look @ the effectiveness of the jab among SA #HealthWorkers
2. Gray:
1. #Sisonke vaccinated 477 234 #HealthWorkers
2. 122 sites were used to vaccinate health workers
3. Gray:
#Sisonke researchers used three sets of data to analyse the study's results:
1. 2 sets of data from medical insurers were used and one set of provincial persal data
2. Today Gray is only reporting on two sets of data
Read 11 tweets