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Vaccination Campaign Efforts in Africa: Monkeypox, Marburg and Covid

Jul 26, 2022

Umamah Bakharia

While Covid-19 vaccines have been rolling out globally, emerging viruses like monkeypox and Marburg have recently been detected in South Africa and globally.

This has raised concerns over what is being done to curb the virus and the vaccination availability in Africa.

Speaking to Radio Islam, South African Medical Association (SAMA), Dr Angelique Coetzee says emerging viruses don’t have the same level of concern that Covid-19 did.

 

 

One of the viruses is monkeypox which has been showing low fatality rates, with smallpox vaccinations being reported to curb the spread.

“People who are in contact with doctors or healthcare workers working with monkeypox cases will be eligible to get the smallpox vaccine, but it’s not out there for the public,” says Dr Coetzee.

Another virus that has caught the attention of healthcare practitioners in West Africa is the Marburg virus which they say has a very high mortality rate. “There is a vaccine still on trial that they think is based on the Ebola vaccine might be able to protect you against the Marburg virus,” she says.

She warns that the Marburg virus has a high transmission rate.

According to SAMA, approximately 50.83% of South Africans have been vaccinated against Covid-19. “We are so far behind if we look at the first world countries; however, if we compare ourselves with Africa, we are the [ahead on the continent], but it is still a long way from where we should be,” says Dr Coetzee.

Adding that the world is ignoring the increased rates of Tuberculosis (TB).

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