Published on: 14 April 2024 Category: Media Statement

Mahikeng - The North West Department of Health has confirm availability of children vaccines in all health facilities across the province. This therefore renders the reported shortage of children vaccines as not factual.

The alleged shortage of children vaccines was reported to have affected three clinics of Mahikeng in the Ngaka Modiri Molema District. Upon further probing of the allegations the affected clinics were reported to be Magogoe, Montshioa Stadt and Gateway Clinic located at the provincial hospital. Unfortunately all efforts to establish the veracity of the allegations proved futile as available data and interviews conducted confirmed that there was never a period in recent times when there was no vaccines.

The Department can confirm that it managed to maintain a satisfactory level of children vaccines availability at above 90% average for ages at birth, 6 weeks, 10 weeks, 14 weeks, 6 months, 9 months, 12 months, 18 months, 6 years, Grade 5 learners > 9 years of age and for 12 years olds.

However, the Department suspects that there could have been a gap in the effective communication regarding the introduction of a revised Immunization Schedule that came into effect from January 2024. The introduction of the new schedule follows a phased in – phase out approach of new and old vaccines. According to the previous Immunization Schedule, children were vaccinated against Pertussis at the ages of 6 weeks, 10 weeks and 14 weeks with a booster dose at 18 months. The revised Immunization Schedule includes Pertussis-containing (TdaP) vaccines at the same ages with two additional doses at 6 years and 12 years of age. The revised Immunization schedule also includes Pertussis-containing (TdaP) vaccines in the Immunization schedule during pregnancy. The new Tdap Vaccine is already being ordered and issued to facilities in the Province. There is currently a total of 7974 x TdaP Vaccines in stock in the Province which is a sufficient quantity in the transitioning process to the Revised Immunization Schedule as introduced.

Meanwhile MEC Madoda Sambatha has established a Medicine Availability Intervention Team which has been given the responsibility of monitoring medicines stock levels

To date the work of this team has been to assess and intervene in among others the pharmaceutical supply chain issues, systems effectiveness, distribution and delivery processes, storage capacity, human resources capacity and on safety issues. Health MEC Madoda Sambatha has indicated that the assessment has been conducted across the province starting at the Mmabatho Medical Depot and moving into to the pharmacies in hospitals and clinics.

“The intervention has immediately resulted with improved communication between the medical depot and pharmacy managers in health facilities. This is important for speedy resolution of any bottlenecks in the distribution and delivery of medicine between the depot and health facilities”, said MEC Sambatha.

The intervention team has also identified short to long term plans like establishing mini-depots in the districts and opening of bulk pharmacies closer to the facilities. The new Dr Kenneth Kaunda District Bulk Pharmacy has recently been officially opened will improve medicine storage and distribution capacity in the Dr Kenneth Kaunda District.


Tebogo Lekgethwane Departmental Spokesperson 0674227763

Khuthala Tshangela MLO MEC Support 0664586915



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