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LOCAL RESEARCH FINDS SA 501 COVID19 VARIANT IN MOST SAMPLES



Scientific advisor of the COVID-19 Presidential Task Force, Dr. Mogomotsi Matshaba says the South African 501.v2 Covid-19 variant has been identified in at least 76% of samples selectively tested.

Speaking during a Covid-19 update last night, Dr. Matshaba said the variant was identified in samples from Greater Gaborone, Palapye, Maun and Phikwe areas. He said these areas have high movement and business activities hence the high prevalence of the variant.

He further said they are currently using the data gathered to identify which vaccines would be best suited for use in the country. Matshaba however said he is concerned that preliminary findings in SA had indicated that some vaccines proved to be ineffective against the SA 501 variant, but says this can change depending on the population.

Matshaba said as many countries around the world have began vaccinating, movement will be increasing which will likely introduce other variants from the likes of Brazil and New York as well as other variants into the country. 32 615 covid 19 cases have been recorded to date with a death toll of 447.

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