Despite the lifting of most COVID-19 restrictions, a panel of experts warns that South Africa has not yet exited the forest. A virtual conference reiterated that the vaccine is still the best virus protection.
Experts looked at the challenges that contributed to low vaccine uptake.
Less than 45% of the South African population has been vaccinated, far from the government’s 75% target.
South Africa is struggling with low demand for vaccines. One health expert attributed this to a lack of trust between the public and government communication.
Dr. Lesley Bramford, acting director general of Health, says: “People want information they get from a source they trust. There was a lot of information and misinformation.
“A lot of misinformation has flowed. But the biggest discovery is that people want to get information from a trusted source. ”
Panel participants identified the younger population as the most reluctant to vaccinate. Their research shows that vaccination rates are low in large metros and informal settlements. Changing some standards is suggested to encourage more people to get vaccinated.
Researcher Jane Simmonds says, “I think if we shape our conversation today to be what will be the new norm in the resilient population. What can we do structurally against vaccination hesitation so that it is not an individual decision but a community-driven thing. ”
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So far, the government has used various methods to communicate the benefits of vaccinations to the most vulnerable. Other efforts include working with local leaders such as preachers, ward counselors, and bosses.
Communication in all 11 official languages also contributed to more than 50,000 people being injected within 3 months.
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Vaccine remains the best form of protection against COVID-19 virus, experts warn – SABC News
Source link Vaccine remains the best form of protection against COVID-19 virus, experts warn – SABC News