covid 19 vaccines

Three COVID-19 vaccines South Africans should know about

Published by Michè Edwards

With an information overload on COVID-19 vaccines going around, it must be difficult to fully grasp the ‘what, when and how many’ about vaccines. There are three vaccines South Africans should probe right now, all with its own specifications. 

Three COVID-19 vaccines relevant to South Africans

We list three vaccines you could educate on in the fight against COVID-19. 

Pfizer-BioNTech: currently 20 million doses ordered for South Africa 

Type of vaccine: mRNA

Number of shots: 2 shots, 21 days apart

Who should not take this? Pregnant women, people under 16 and those who have severe allergies. 

Common Side effects: 

  • Tiredness
  • Headache
  • Muscle pain
  • Chills
  • Fever
  • Nausea

The SAPHRA approved Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is recommended for people aged 16 years and older. It is administered by a shot in the muscle of the upper arm. The mRNA vaccines are a new type of vaccine that teach our bodies to make a protein and triggers an immune response inside our bodies. The immune response is what protects us from getting infected if the real virus enters our bodies.

Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen: 9 million doses in South Africa

Type of vaccine: Viral vector

Number of shots: 1 shot

Common Side effects:

  • Pain at the injection site 
  • Headache 
  • Tiredness
  • Muscle pain 
  • Nausea

Approximately 80, 000 doses were delivered to South Africa in February this year, but an additional Sixty-thousand Johnson & Johnson vaccines arrived a few days ago. The J&J vaccine is effective in preventing COVID-19 amongst those ages 18 and older. Also shot in the upper arm, the viral vector vaccine uses a modified version of a different virus that will enter a cell in the body to produce a harmless piece of the virus. 

Moderna vaccine: in the works for South African variant

All viruses, including the one that causes COVID-19, constantly mutate into new versions or variants. Manufacturers of the Moderna vaccine itself, ModernaTX, Inc. is using a third dose of its existing vaccine, as well as a booster shot that targets the South African variant also known as 501.V2 or B.1.351. The company is yet to provide insight about the trial status of the new vaccine and its exact side effects.

Visit https://sacoronavirus.co.za for the latest COVID-19 updates.

-->