The Health Minister, Dr Zweli Mkhize, has officially launched Phase 2 of the the country’s vaccination campaign.
Government is prioritising citizens who are 60 years and older. “Five million senior citizens are targeted to be completed by the end of June, provided that the supply of vaccines flow as anticipated,” says Mkhize.
Over 80 vaccination sites will open on Monday morning. Mkhize says there will be no walk-ins allowed.
The Minister says healthcare workers and the elderly who have registered to be vaccinated will get invited to a vaccination site via an SMMes.
So far more than 2.1 million South Africans have registered for the shots. Out of these are over 1 227 million senior citizens and more than 914 000 healthcare workers.
“We recommend that as many people as possible register beforehand. For tomorrow (Monday) we will not be able to accommodate walk-ins, however we will, going forward, be able to do so. The programme has been designed to avoid long queues. This is why it is important that as many people as possible register beforehand, and follow the instructions which they receive by SMS,” Minister Mkhize advises.
Live stream of the Minister’s briefing:
Qualifying citizens will receive Pfizer shots.
“Tomorrow (Monday) Phase 2 will start as planned with Pfizer vaccines at 87 sites across the country, that will be 83 in public sector and four in the private sector, then we want to increase the site to just over 200 by the end of the week. As we speak, SMSes are being dispatched with invitations to vaccinate. Tomorrow 7 707 SMSes are being dispatched to healthcare workers and then 4 288 SMSes are sent to senior citizens above 60 years of age,” he adds.
Mkhize says 325 260 more doses of the Pfizer vaccine will arrive in the country at midnight, bringing the total of the doses in the country to 975 780.
The vaccination of healthcare workers will also continue using the Pfizer vaccine. Government hopes to reach its target of 1.2 million vaccinations by the end of this week.
“By end June we expect to have received 4.5 million doses of Pfizer and, 2 million doses of J&J once released. The J&J vaccine is still awaiting release from the Food and Drug Administration of America and we are constantly being updated by the J&J global head office on progress in this regard,” says the Minister.
The country’s health MECs have confirmed that their provinces are ready for the second phase of the mass vaccinations.
The Health Minister says 478 733 South Africans were vaccinated with the J&J vaccine under the Sisonke Programme, which was aimed at healthcare workers.
Leftover J&J doses won’t be used for the next two phases of the vaccination drive.
“But will be used by the Medical research Council to conduct important studies and programmes that will help us to understand how the vaccines work for population groups such as persons living with HIV and other co-morbidities, elite athletes, pregnant and lactating women and other special groups,” says Minister Mkhize.
Ways to register on EVDS:
- online at www.vaccine.enroll.gov.za
- using the whatsapp line 0600 123456
- by sms- dial *134*832#
- call the COVID-19 hotline 0800 029 999
- You can use the new QR- simply scan and follow the prompts. The QR code will be published widely and can be found on sacoronavirus website or the National Department of Health Website.
All services are zero rated, meaning no airtime, data or money is needed to use the services.