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Webinar Recording: Cancer Patients and COVID-19 Vaccination

What cancer patients / survivors should know… 

CANSA and the SANCDA arranged a webinar session about cancer patients and the COVID vaccine. The panel of presenters included two oncology experts sharing current recommendations and information, Dr Zainab Mohamed, Head Clinical Unit, Radiation Oncology Groote Schuur Hospital / University of Cape Town and Dr Ria David,  a medical oncologist and specialist physician from Oncocare.

The session was open to everyone affected by cancer, including newly diagnosed people starting their cancer treatment journey, cancer survivors and those who in remission. Cancer patients and survivors have vulnerable immune systems and need to be protected.

The webinar was facilitated by Dr Brenda Kubheka from Health IQ Consulting. Dr Vicki Pinkney-Atkinson, Director of the South African Non-Communicable Diseases Alliance (SANCDA), also joined the panel. She is a strong advocate for people living with non-communicable diseases.


Dr Zainab Mohammed:


Dr Ria David:



Presenter Biographies

Dr Brenda Kubheka is a medical doctor with special interests in patient safety, ethics and media in healthcare. She is a co-founder and MD of Health IQ Consulting. She has worked in both the private and public sectors at senior and executive levels. She is an Aspen’s African Leadership initiative fellow and a PhD candidate at Wits University. She holds various qualifications including various diplomas, MBA and cert in Media and Medicine. She has published academic papers and opinion pieces both locally and internationally.

Dr Zainab Mohamed attained her MBChB at the University of Cape Town in 1992 and her MMed in Radiation Oncology at the University of Stellenbosch in 2004. Her career as a Clinical and Radiation Oncologists commenced at Groote Schuur Hospital in 2005 and she is presently the Head of the Clinical Unit and a senior lecturer at the University of Cape Town. She runs the Lymphoma and Kaposi’s sarcoma clinics and provides radiotherapy services to Clinical Haematology. Her research interests include HIV-associated malignancies and lymphomas. She has a special interest in Palliative care and is co-facilitator of an on-line palliative care course offered to Oncologists by the University of Cape Town. She is a member of the University of Cape Town Human Research Ethics Committee and Vice President (South Africa) for AORTIC.

Dr Ria David was born and grew up in Durban. She completed her undergraduate studies at the University of Natal, Medical School in 2002 and thereafter served her internship in Cape Town and community service in deep rural KwaZulu Natal. She discovered a love for internal medicine at McCord Hospital where she served 2 years as a medical officer. This led to a 7-year postgraduate journey at the University of Witwatersrand where she completed her specialisation in internal medicine, and then a super specialist qualification in medical oncology before returning to her home town. Dr David now practises oncology at Oncocare in the Durban and Umhlanga branches of the practice. She has special interests in breast-, colorectal and haematological malignancies. She also serves on the executive committees of the Durban Breast Cancer Forum and the Cardio-Oncology Society of Southern Africa.

Dr Vicki Pinkney-Atkinson (PhD, RN, RM) is the CEO of the South African Non-Communicable Disease Alliance (SANCDA), in which capacity she has served since its formation in 2013.  Vicki was born with an NCD, psoriasis, and now lives with around 20 NCDs conditions. She is the survivor of multiple near-death NCDs experiences, which shaped her NCDs and health activism. Today she advocates for NCDs equity and policy coherence in South Africa.  Over 50 years of work experience in the health sector allow a 360o perspective of stakeholders and spaces that stretch Soweto in the 1970’s and rural apartheid “homelands” to continental and global forays. Today she enjoys the reach and safety that the internet provides.


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