“The request is receiving attention and we are working with the South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) on a possible approach,” he said.
This was said by the Minister of Health Dr Joe Phaahla at a press briefing on October 15th, responding to a call by nurses to be included in the Covid 19 Booster, shot for immunocompromised.
The Minister of Health announced on the press briefing that, the Ministerial Advisory Committee (MAC) on COVID-19 Vaccines has advised that additional doses be given to individuals with compromised immunity.
The health minister mentioned in his speech that a request by some health care workers who were vaccinated under J &J booster are asking to be included in the Covid 19 booster.
The Vaccine is meant for those who are on long-term oral steroid therapy for autoimmune conditions and various treatments for haematological or immune malignancies.
The group will also comprise those with solid organ or bone marrow transplants, renal dialysis and primary immunological disorders.
“The advice is that these categories of patients be offered an additional dose over the prescribed normal, but this must be strictly under the referral by their medical doctor under their supervision,” Phaahla explained.
Factors that may affect a worker’s risk for exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19 to play a role in consideration of the booster job.
According to the centres for DiBiase control and prevention (CDC), health workers are constantly exposed to the Virus and must be included on the covid -19 booster shot.
With that in mind the Health worker safety: now more than ever the Universal Declaration of human rights, by its article 23, affirms that the right to work includes
“just and favourable conditions of work as a fundamental human right. governments and other stakeholders must provide safe, secure and supportive working environments for all workers. Given that, globally, women makeup approximately 70% of the health workforce, promoting health worker safety directly supports elimination.
Workers in South Africa also have rights that need to be protected by the Constitution they include The Labour Relations Act (LRA) expands on these basic rights. In addition to this, the Basic Conditions of Employment Act (BCEA) seeks to protect vulnerable workers.
The conditions outlined in the LRA and the BCEA aren’t inflexible, meaning that employers can offer better conditions, but not worse conditions.
By Siphokazi Mnyobe