JOHANNESBURG (AP) — South Africa is considering giving a COVID-19 vaccine that is still in the testing phase to health workers, after suspending the rollout of another shot that preliminary data indicated may be only minimally effective against the mutated form of the virus dominating the country.
The country was scrambling Monday to come up with a new vaccination strategy after it halted the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine.
Among the possibilities being considered: mixing the AstraZeneca vaccine with another one or giving Johnson & Johnson's single-dose vaccine, which has not yet been authorized for use anywhere, to 100,000 health care workers while monitoring its efficacy against the variant.
According to The Associated Press, the abrupt halt comes after preliminary results showed the vaccine reacted minimally against mild/moderate disease caused by the variant.
The AP reported that 46,000 people have died from the variant.