A local health expert has sought to allay fears regarding the safety of COVID-19 vaccines following the deaths of 23 people in Norway who died within days of receiving their first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.
Mpilo Central Hospital acting chief executive officer (CEO) Solwayo Ngwenya told NewsDay in an interview that Zimbabweans should accept the COVID-19 vaccines without fear. He said:
In medicine when you give someone a drug, they can react to it. Some people react violently to the drug and end up dying.
I think what’s happening now with this drug being given to the elderly, is that it causes them to react.
It’s like going into a shock of some sort. It’s called a cytokine storm.
What happens is that your own body sees an invader inside, and it calls soldiers and most of the soldiers are cytokines.
The body overreacts, and then you go into shock and you collapse and die. It seems to have happened with the elderly only.
We do not know the reasons, but obviously, the Norwegians will do more studies.
Ngwenya said most people die from the cytokine storm which is triggered by the virus, and not the vaccines.
Some locals have expressed reservations about receiving the COVID-19 vaccine and this hysteria over the safety of the vaccine has been inflamed by conspiracy theories, some of them being peddled by some self-styled prophets.