The South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) has said it will continue evaluating the safety and watching world developments regarding the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine.
SAHPRA board chairperson Professor Helen Rees says what happened in the US needs to be closely monitored. She says honest discussions between regulators and governments are required.
“We have to be able to not only look for safety but you have to be able to say if that safety signal actually has to do with the vaccine or it is just because things happened when you rolled out vaccines to millions of people.
Health issues still arise and this is what cases causality assessment. You really need to look and say this is really associated with the vaccine or is just a few chances because you are pushing it to so many people.”
This is following the announcement by Health Minister Dr. Zweli Mkhize on the temporary suspension of the vaccine rollout to health workers, following an advisory of federal health agencies in the US to temporarily halt its use as six women developed blood clots after receiving the vaccination.
One of them has since died and another one is in serious condition in hospital.
Mkhize says almost 290 000 healthcare workers have received the J&J vaccine up until now but that no reports of blood clots have been received.
Meanwhile, the South African Medical Association (SAMA) has welcomed Health Minister Dr. Zweli Mkhize’s decision to temporarily halt the rollout of the Johnson and Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine.
(With input from SABC News)