Zweli Mkhize Health South Africa city Johannesburg testing vaccine Zweli Mkhize Health South Africa city Johannesburg

South Africa scraps AstraZeneca vaccine, will give J&J jabs

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JOHANNESBURG – South Africa will give the unapproved Johnson & Johnson vaccine to its front-line health care workers beginning next week as a study to see what protection it provides from COVID-19, particularly against the variant dominant in South Africa, the health minister announced Wednesday.

Zweli Mkhize said South Africa has scrapped plans to use the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine because it “does not prevent mild to moderate disease” of the variant that has spread widely in South Africa.

The one-shot J&J vaccine is still being tested internationally and has not been approved in any country. But Mkhize, in a nationally broadcast address, declared that the vaccine is safe, relying on tests of 44,000 people done in South Africa, the United

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