The number of swine flu fatalities in South Africa doubled since
the weekend, the Star newspaper reported.
The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) said
there had been 5118 laboratory confirmed cases, with 18 being
The institute's deputy director, Dr Lucille Bloomberg, said this
was not a sudden spate of swine flu related deaths but rather delays
in confirming results and collating information from various
At least half of victims were pregnant women and most of the
cases were reported in Gauteng and the Western Cape.
Vaccine takes five weeks to work
Meanwhile it appears that once the vaccine is available, it’s will still be five weeks or more before it provides protection.
Health officials believe most people will need two shots, spaced
three weeks apart, and it will take a week or two after the second
dose before immunity kicks in. That's five or six weeks in all.
Health officials don't really know if that's good or bad news.
Clinical trials started just this month to evaluate the new
vaccine's safety and effectiveness, and the first substantial set
of results is not expected until next month. – (Sapa, August 2009)
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