How vaccines help
Antigens, which are specific organisms that cause an immune response in the body, are contained in vaccines as weak or inactive components. Instead of the antigen itself, more recent vaccinations include the recipe for making antigens. Whether the vaccine contains the antigen itself or the instructions for the body to create it, this weaker form won’t cause disease in the recipient; instead, it will stimulate their immune system to react much as it would have during its initial response to the pathogen. Getting vaccinated not only protects you but also those in the community who cannot get vaccinated. Consider getting immunized if you can.
A person who receives a vaccination is almost certainly going to be protected from the disease being targeted. But not everyone is eligible for vaccination. Certain vaccines may not be safe for people to receive if they have significant sensitivities to some of the vaccine’s components or underlying medical problems that impair their immune systems (such as cancer or HIV). If these persons live with and around those who have received vaccinations, they can still be protected. When a large portion of a community is immunized, the virus has a difficult time spreading because most of the people it comes into contact with are immune. Therefore, the more people who receive vaccinations, the less probable it is that those who cannot receive vaccinations would be exposed to hazardous germs.
Who can get Vaccinated
Almost everyone can receive a vaccination. Some people, however, should either wait to obtain particular immunizations or should not have them because of specific medical issues. These ailments may consist of:
- Chronic illnesses or treatments (like chemotherapy) that affect the immune system
- Severe and life-threatening allergies to vaccine ingredients, which are very rare
- If you have severe illness and a high fever on the day of vaccination
These factors often vary for each vaccine. If you’re not sure if you or your child should get a particular vaccine, talk to your health worker. They can help you make an informed choice about vaccination for you or your child.
What is in the Vaccine
A vaccine’s effectiveness and safety are dependent on each of its component parts. A few of these are:
- The antigen. This is a killed or weakened form of a virus or bacteria, which trains our bodies to recognize and fight the disease if we encounter it in the future.
- Adjuvants, which help to boost our immune response. This means they help vaccines to work better.
- Preservatives, which ensure a vaccine stays effective.
- Stabilisers, which protect the vaccine during storage and transportation
When mentioned on the label of a vaccine, the chemicals can seem strange. However, a large number of the ingredients found in vaccinations naturally occur in our bodies, the environment, and the food we eat. The safety of vaccines is ensured by stringent testing and monitoring of both the vaccines’ components and the vaccines themselves.
Are vaccine safe
Vaccination is risk-free, and any adverse reactions are typically modest and transient, like a painful arm or a low-grade fever. Though they are relatively rare, more severe side effects are conceivable. Before being authorized for use, every licensed vaccination undergoes extensive testing over several trial phases, and it is routinely reviewed after being made available. Additionally, researchers are continually looking at data from many sources for any indication that a vaccine may have negative health effects.
An illness that is preventable by vaccination is much more likely to cause substantial harm to you than a vaccine. For instance, measles can result in encephalitis (a brain infection), which can result in blindness, while tetanus can result in severe pain, muscle spasms (lockjaw), and blood clots. Numerous diseases that are prevented by vaccination can potentially be fatal. Without vaccines, there would be a lot more illnesses and fatalities because the advantages of vaccination far outweigh the hazards.
Are there side effects from vaccines
A low-grade temperature, discomfort, or redness at the injection site are examples of the moderate adverse effects that vaccines, like any medication, can produce. Mild effects naturally disappear after a few days. Extremely infrequent side effects include severe or persistent ones. Vaccines are continuously inspected for safety to find uncommon adverse reactions.
How do I know if vaccines are safe?
A vaccination must undergo extensive testing and clinical trials where it is administered to and watched over by teams of volunteers before being made available to the general public. A vaccination is produced to strict standards, licensed by national regulators, and distributed when it has been proven to be both safe and effective.
How are vaccines administered?
Most vaccines are administered by injection, but some can either be taken orally or sprayed directly into the nasal canals.
There are several COVID-19 vaccinations available. A large number of COVID-19 vaccines are being produced, and some vaccines from some nations’ regulatory bodies have already been given the go-ahead. The World Health Organization (WHO) works with international partners to ensure that everyone who needs the COVID-19 vaccination has access to it after it has been shown to be both safe and effective. Most of the COVID-19 vaccines for testing or evaluation call for two doses.
How can we know if COVID-19 vaccines will be distributed to all countries fairly?
South Africa is a member of the international COVAX alliance, which is trying to hasten the creation of COVID-19 vaccines. Additionally, COVAX will guarantee fair and equal access to these vaccinations and will distribute vaccines among nations based on a framework created by a team of ethicists, scientists, and other health professionals that has been approved by the Member States of the WHO.
Who approves these vaccines before they can be used in South Africa?
The South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) must evaluate the vaccine’s safety, effectiveness, and quality before it can be made available to the public. Through a number of approaches, SAHPRA has committed to evaluating these vaccines quickly, cutting down on the time it typically takes to approve a product. The Oxford University-AstraZeneca vaccine received approval from a number of international regulatory bodies and is being sold in other nations.
How do I register?
There are 4 ways to register on EVDS:
- Dialling *134*832#
- Calling 0800 029 999 – It should just take 2 to 5 minutes to register on the platform if you have all of your information ready. When it is your turn to be vaccinated, you will receive an SMS or message after registering with a date and the location for your vaccination.
To register on the website you need a smartphone, tablet or computer with access to the internet. Standard data rates apply.
- Go to https://vaccine.enroll.health.gov.za and follow the instructions to choose your date, time and site
- When you are finished, you will receive a confirmation SMS. You are now in the queue to get vaccinated
- Once registered, if you want to you can choose or change your vaccine date, time or site at booking.health.gov.za
To register on WhatsApp you need a cell phone with WhatsApp. Standard data rates apply.
- Click on this link wa.me/27600123456?text=register and press send
- Follow the instructions
- When you are finished, you will get a confirmation message. You are now in the queue to get vaccinated
You can register for free from any cell phone on any SA mobile network.
- Dial *134*832# or
- If you are an SA citizen you can skip some questions by dialling *134*832*IDNumber# followed by your ID number (with no spaces) and then #
- Answer each question by replying with the number of the option you have chosen
- When you are finished, you will get a confirmation message. You are now in the queue to get vaccinated.
Call 0800 029 999 toll free
- Monday to Friday: 7am to 8pm
- Saturday, Sunday and public holidays: 8am to 6pm
- You will receive a confirmation SMS. You are now in the queue to get vaccinated.
As per WHO’s global classification system for national medical product regulatory authorities, South Africa’s vaccine regulatory system has a functional level of maturity. This acknowledges that South Africa has a reliable, efficient, and comprehensive regulatory system in place to guarantee the efficacy, safety, and high quality of vaccines produced, imported, or dispensed within the nation.
The third of the four levels in the WHO categorization, maturity level three (ML3), was officially attained by the nation. The highest maturity level is level four (ML4).
“This achievement affirms South Africa’s trailblazing endeavour in health research. Beyond its technical aspects, this milestone carries real implications for people’s health. We cannot talk about better health care without quality medical supplies,” said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa. “This is an important new step not only for South Africa, but for the region towards self-sufficiency in vaccines and medicines.”
“This rapid progress in vaccines regulation is a significant milestone for South Africa, the Southern African region, and the continent. It is an important win for vaccine equity, as the country is a major manufacturer of medical products and this regulatory milestone will help maximise the impact of the mRNA vaccine technology hub.” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General.
Along with Tanzania, Ghana, and Nigeria, SAHPRA is the fourth National Regulatory Authority (NRA) in the WHO African Region to be designated as an ML3 regulatory authority. It is the sixth African country to reach this status, after Egypt, which did so for vaccines earlier in 2022. Through a center of excellence and training (the mRNA vaccine technology hub) headquartered in Cape Town, South Africa, this transition to ML3 will considerably support WHO efforts to create capacity in low- and middle-income countries to make mRNA vaccines.
ALSO READ :How to reverse money using capitec app