Almost a year to the day that Glynne Mitchell, Gauteng’s first COVID-19 patient was admitted for the respiratory disease, the very doctor who treated her received the Johnson and Johnson vaccine – and she was right there to witness it.

Mitchell was admitted to the Charlotte Maxeke Hospital in Johannesburg on 7 March 2020 – she was part of the group that had tested positive for COVID-19 after returning from Italy and it was Dr Jarrod Zamperini who attended to her.

Zamperini was among 200 healthcare workers who received the vaccine at the hospital on Tuesday, 2 March 2021.

“It’s been a long time coming and it’s nice to be here. I’m obviously cognizant of friends and colleagues who had COVID-19 and didn’t make it so we think about them while we’re getting this vaccine today as well,” he said.

Speaking to journalists, Mitchell said she was in good health and that Zamperini made the best choices for her, taking her condition into consideration.

“I’m eternally grateful for him and he definitely put me at ease…They gave the best care and I’m so glad that he got vaccinated today. It gives such faith and hope for all our frontine healthcare workers. What a great day and I’m so glad I get to be a part of it,” she said.

COVID-19 in SA: Gauteng to vaccinate 215 000 healthcare workers

Gauteng Premier David Makhura who was at the Charlotte Maxeke Hospital for the historic occasion said more than 17,000 health workers have been vaccinated in the province so far. The aim is to inoculate 215 000 healthcare workers, both in the public and private sector.

“Once we are done with that, we have machinery on the ground. Now we have 224 sites that are for mass vaccination for phase 2 and phase 3,” he said.

Charlotte Maxeke and the George Mukhari Academic Hospital in Ga-Rankuwa were recently added as vaccination sites.

“Today [Tuesday] we are going to vaccinate 140 of our staff members as the first day of the vaccination. We have our labour movements saying that CEO we would like to be the first among those vaccinated to show our members that this vaccine is important and they are also taking it. So we are really appreciative of their efforts to help us get as many people as possible on the programme,” George Mukhari Academic Hospital CEO Gladys Bogoshi said.

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Presh JM Reporter

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