New research published in the South African Medical Journal has found compelling evidence that a blanket ban on alcohol reduces the number of unnatural deaths related to trauma injuries while curfews have less of an impact. Adele Baleta spoke to lead author, Professor Tom Moultrie.
An experimental COVID-19 vaccine currently in Phase I trials being run by the University of Cape Town has a unique design that might allow it to offer better protection against current and future variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Elri Voigt provides an update on the trial and unpacks the science behind this vaccine candidate.
When South Africa’s rollout of the AstraZeneca vaccine was put on hold in early February, a scramble ensued to ensure healthcare workers could be protected. Chris Bateman spoke to Professor Glenda Gray about the behind-the-scenes negotiations that helped secure 500 000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine – almost all of which have now been used in the Sisonke study.
COVID-19 numbers have in recent weeks been rising in the Free State, leading some to fear that the province might be at the beginning of a third wave of infections. Refilwe Mochoari asked the Department of Health, unions, and opposition political parties whether the province is ready for a third wave.
Wastewater surveillance has become an important part of South Africa’s COVID-19 monitoring systems and might even help to give early warning of a potential third wave of infections. Tiyese Jeranji looks at what is involved.
South Africa’s childhood immunisation rates declined in 2020 compared to previous years, largely due to COVID-19 and the related lockdown. Elri Voigt asked government about the country’s catch-up plans.
Even though it has been ready for months, findings of a critically important tuberculosis survey have not been made public. Every day that passes, the more outdated the findings become, and accordingly the less useful.
Between the beginning of May and the first week of August, there have been over 33 000 excess deaths in South Africa. This is over three times the number of confirmed COVID-19 deaths. Kathryn Cleary asked the experts what we do and do not know about what so many people are dying of.
South Africa is consolidating its place in the race for a COVID-19 vaccine with its participation starting from next month in two new international trials of vaccine candidates. Adele Baleta reports.