• Adami Geldenhuys

Covid-19 Regulatory Update: 18 - 24 August 2021

This week's edition refers to topics such as vaccine acceptance and hesitancy; the full approval of the Pfizer COVID vaccine by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA); the legal implications of a proposed campaign by the Limpopo Health MEC, in which liquor traders should refuse to sell alcohol to unvaccinated customers; mandatory vaccinations; vaccine mandates and SAHPRA's statement on adverse events following immunisation.

Contents:

Alcohol Sales to Unvaccinated Customers

Corruption

Education

Elections

Employment

Government Performance

Insurance

Ivermectin

Lockdown Contraventions

No-fault Compensation Fund

Unemployment Insurance (TERS)

Vaccines

ALCOHOL SALES TO UNVACCINATED CUSTOMERS


Vaccine and the law. – 2021 Aug 23 Enca (Interview with legal expert Nthabiseng Dubazana from Dubazana Attorneys about the legal implications of a proposed campaign by the Limpopo Health MEC, in which liquor traders should refuse to sell alcohol to unvaccinated customers?)


CORRUPTION


Ellis, Estelle. Controversial R4.8m Eastern Cape Covid awareness campaign contractor takes payment battle to special tribunal. – 2021 Aug 23 Daily Maverick [Extract from article: “A special tribunal will rule on Wednesday if an order that stopped payment for a controversial door-to-door Covid-19 awareness campaign in the OR Tambo District Municipality in the Eastern Cape will be rescinded after the owner of the company mounted a legal fightback.]


Makhura caused financial losses through illegal PPE contracts, tribunal hears. – 2021 Aug 19 Eyewitness News


Shange, Naledi. Joburg nurse charged with selling 'fake' Covid-19 certificates 'also had abortion pills'. – 2021 Aug 23 Times Live


EDUCATION


Basic Education concerned at level of learning losses suffered due to COVID-19. – 19 Aug 2021.


ELECTIONS


IEC doesn't have funds for PPE for municipal polls – Sheburi. ­– 2021 Aug 18 Eyewitness News


EMPLOYMENT


Abader, Naa’ilah and Rogers, Pareen. In for the long haul? Managing employees who suffer from long COVID. - 2021 Aug 10 ENSafrica


GOVERNMENT PERFORMANCE


Labia, Natale. Which systems of government have handled the Covid pandemic best? - 2021 Aug 17 Daily Maverick [Extract from article: “Hervé Lemahieu, director of research at Australia’s Lowy Institute, has done a fascinating piece of research on assessing the “Covid performance index” that tracks the rate of infections, tests and deaths in more than 100 countries and attempts to show if political systems, levels of economic development or other factors have affected nations’ handling of the virus.”]


INSURANCE


Britton, Nicole; Costa, Amelia and Van der Vyver, Ernie. FSCA publishes press release updating the industry on COVID-19 contingent business interruption claims. – 2021 Aug 13 Clyde & Co [Extract from article: “On 12 August 2021 the Financial Sector Conduct Authority issued a press release entitled “Update on Contingent Business Interruption claims” in terms of which the FSCA provides an update on the processing of contingent business interruption claims.”]


Francis, Deon; Venter, Tarryn and Menachemi, Lee. Insurance brokers vs fortune tellers – Understanding the duties of insurance brokers in South Africa. – 2021 Aug 3 Clyde & Co [Extract from article: “A new trend is emerging in South Africa with businesses starting to institute claims against their insurance brokers’ failure to extend cover under the Business Interruption sections of their insurance policies for the COVID-19 pandemic. This article examines the duties of insurance brokers and looks at whether these claims against brokers have any merit.”]


IVERMECTIN


Makhafola, Getrude. SA professor agrees with FDA warning issued against use of ivermectin to treat Covid-19 in humans. – 2021 Aug 19 News24


LOCKDOWN CONTRAVENTIONS


Mavuso, Sihle. Niehaus' trial postponed to November. - 2021 Aug 18 IOL [Extract from article: “The trial of suspended senior ANC member and Luthuli House staffer, Carl Niehaus, was on Wednesday afternoon postponed to November after the State said it was not ready to start prosecuting him yet.]


NO-FAULT COMPENSATION FUND


Khoza, Amanda. No-fault compensation fund not yet finalised: deputy health minister. - 2021 Aug 18 Dispatch Live


UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE (TERS)


Cithi, Doctor and Msweli, Buhle. The latest COVID-19 TERS benefit extension: Who qualifies and how. – 2021 Jul 26 Andersen [Extract from article: “In this alert, we broadly outline the recent developments concerning the COVID-19 TERS benefit, which has been extended for certain employees, and which benefit will now be paid directly to employees.”]


Hamman, Salomé. UIF and COVID-19: How to ensure you meet your obligations as an employee and employer. - 2021 Aug 5 SchoemanLaw Inc. [Extract from article: “For employees who qualify, the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) provided temporary relief for those who lost their jobs during these difficult times. However, this highlighted the need for employers to ensure in these troubling times that they comply with the necessary registration requirements and provision for the employees to claim unemployment insurance and other related benefits.”]


VACCINES


Acceptance and Hesitancy


Matwadia, Eyaaz. Vaccine hesitancy, inequality hinder SA’s vaccine roll-out. - 2021 Aug 17 Mail & Guardian


Alexander, Kate [et al.] UJ-HSRC Covid-19 Democracy Survey: Vaccine acceptance and hesitancy: Findings from the UJ/HSRC Covid19 Democracy Survey. 18 August 2021. [Report 1] [Extract from summary of key findings: “There was minimal variation in rates of acceptance and vaccination across a spectrum between ‘extremely religious’ and ‘extremely non-religious’. ...vaccine acceptance is higher among people who say they know ‘a lot’ about Covid-19 vaccines (79%), than among those who say they know ‘a fair amount’ (74%), ‘a little’ (72%) and ‘nothing at all’ (62%). The implication is that increased knowledge will lead to increased acceptance. ....With information sources, the lowest acceptance rate was associated with social media and the highest rate with flyers etc., with television and radio in the middle. There is a case for intensifying campaigning across all platforms, but television is the most important because it has the greatest influence (followed by radio).”]


Runciman, Carin [et al.] UJ-HSRC Covid-19 democracy survey: Self-reported explanations for vaccine acceptance and hesitancy. 18 August 2021.[Report 2] [Extract from summary of key findings: The analysis demonstrates that there are few gendered differences in the explanations for vaccine hesitancy. However, women appear to be more concerned about side-effects compared to men, mentioned by 37% of women compared to 19% of men. ... As for educational differences, those with a post-matric education are significantly more concerned with the effectiveness of the vaccine. This was raised by 46% of hesitant adults with a post-matric qualification, compared to 21% of those less than a matric-level education. ....”]


Adverse Effects


Gcwabe, Lilita. SAHPRA report fails to link deaths to COVID-19 shots. - 2021 Aug Health-e.org.za


South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA). SAHPRA statement on adverse events following immunisation (AEFIS) with Covid 19 vaccines. – 2021 Aug 20 SAHPRA


Advocacy


Charles, Marvin. Covid-19: Why the Western Cape education department is training teachers in vaccine advocacy. – 2021 Aug 24 News24

Anti-Vax Protests


Groote Schuur anti-vax protest 'misplaced and disrespectful' - public health groups. – 2021 Aug 21 News24


Approval


US Food and Drug Administration. FDA approves first COVID-19 vaccine. – 2021 Aug 23 FDA (Extract from media release: “Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the first COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine has been known as the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, and will now be marketed as Comirnaty (koe-mir’-na-tee), for the prevention of COVID-19 disease in individuals 16 years of age and older. The vaccine also continues to be available under emergency use authorization (EUA), including for individuals 12 through 15 years of age and for the administration of a third dose in certain immunocompromised individuals.”


US grants Pfizer COVID vaccine full approval. – 2021 Aug 23 Enca


Certificates


Shange, Naledi. Joburg nurse charged with selling 'fake' Covid-19 certificates 'also had abortion pills'. – 2021 Aug 23 Times Live


Disinformation / Misinformation


Pico, Refilwe. Targeted vaccine education is crucial to combat insidious misinformation and disinformation. - 2021 Aug 17 Daily Maverick


Distribution


Covid-19 vaccine distribution: Why J&J is accused of using colonial tactics. - 2021 Aug 18 News24


Mandatory Vaccination


Cheadle, Halton and Gray, Glenda. Can the government constitutionally require that everyone be vaccinated against Covid-19? (Part 1). – 2021 Aug 20 Daily Maverick


Faku, Dineo. Vaccinations to become mandatory at Curro Holdings premises. – 2021 Aug 19 IOL [Extract from article: “Curro Holdings, South Africa’s biggest private school group, is taking legal action to become a mandatory vaccinated company...”]


Farber, Tanya. Mandatory jabs not on cards yet, but experts say pandemic requires special measures. ­– 2021 Aug 22 TimesLive


Sinclair, Leah. University becomes first in the UK to ban unvaccinated students. – 2021 Aug 22 The Evening Standard


Talks about making the jab mandatory. – 2021 Aug 23 Enca (Wits vaccinology professor Shabir Madhi spoke with eNCA's Thulasizwe Simelane about questions on vaccine policy in South Africa.)


Vaccine Mandate


Thaldar, Donrich and Shozi, Bonginkosi. Why a COVID-19 vaccine mandate is not the best policy option for South Africa. – 2021 Aug 18 The Conversation [Extract from article: “It is important to consider the issue of public trust in the government and in the science of COVID-19 vaccines. A vaccine mandate is a drastic policy measure that may have far-reaching consequences – in fact, it might even be counter-productive.]


The Lexinfo Covid-19 Regulatory Update is a free weekly newsletter containing topical references to the latest information on Covid-19 related legal issues




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