As part of the Public Health Emergency Solidarity Trial, under the auspices of the WHO, South Africa will be part of the Covid-19 Vaccine trials. Health Minister Zweli Mkhize has moved to calm South Africans with regard to SA’s participation in these trials. Several countries are involved in the race to find a vaccine and a cure for the disease. Mkhize said that concerns around the ethics of vaccine trials were unfounded since times have changed considerably. “All the research work that gets done now is mediated via ethical committees and there’s no way some abuse can be accepted or tolerated.”
Mkhize told MP’s that the country had the intellectual capacity and skills to be part of an effort to help the entire world while contributing to the body of knowledge around the Coronavirus. According to Mkhize, there is another important benefit too: “Those countries that would have been at the forefront of the development of the vaccine through their trials will be the first ones to be able to get access to the vaccine.”
More than 40 vaccines are currently being developed worldwide, four of which are in the initial trial phase already.