Four things you need to know before walking into a vaccination site

President Cyril Ramaphosa addressed the nation on Tuesday 15 June, moving the country to lockdown level three for the foreseeable future following the recent surge in COVID-19 cases. 

THIRD WAVE OF COVID-19

During the president’s address he mentioned that four out of the nine provinces are officially in the third wave with Gauteng being hit the hardest. He further mentioned that in December last year 640 health workers were infected by COVID-19 over a seven-day period and within the last seven days only 64 health workers have been infected. 

The decrease in infections was due to the roll-out of the first phase of vaccines which the president said should be motivation for all people who are eligible to register and receive the vaccine.

Bhekisisa answers four important questions for those wanting to get their vaccine without an appointment. 

1. WHO IS ELIGIBLE FOR A VACCINE? 

Currently, only people that are 60 and over and healthcare workers may register for the vaccine. The eligible individuals may register via the Electronic Vaccination Data System (EVDS). There are five ways to do this:

  • Online via the registration portal here
  • WhatsApp by messaging “REGISTER” to 0600 123 456
  • USSD code by dialing *134*832* followed by your ID number
  • In-person at a vaccination site 
  • Community health workers sent to your community by the department of health.

Once you have registered you will receive an SMS confirming your registration. A second SMS will be sent with the details of your appointment. Vaccination sites are encouraged to notify you of your appointment at least three days prior. 

Healthcare workers can no longer register on EVDS site, but a new platform has been set up here.

2. CAN YOU JUST WALK IN AND GET VACCINATED?

Yes, you can walk in and get vaccinated if you are eligible, which currently only applies to people over the age of 60. However it is up to the vaccine site manager to decide whether they will accept walk-ins on that day. Therefore this varies at different vaccination sites.

There are also certain rules to follow:

  • Those who have scheduled appointments take priority. 
  • You still have to be registered on the EVDS therefore you would still need to be signed up on the system before getting your jab.
  • You are not guaranteed to get the vaccine on that day, this will depend on the capacity of the site on that day. You may be asked to return on another day.
  • You will need to carry your ID, passport or driver’s license in order to get the vaccine.

3. DO YOU NEED MEDICAL AID FOR A ‘WALK-IN’?

Yes, if you’re going into a private site. The government will not pay for walk-ins of people without medical aid at private vaccine sites so you are likely to be sent to a public site. 

There is an exception for people over the age of 80 who will be covered by the state if they do not have medical aid; however, there is a limit on how many people within this group will be covered. 

4. HOW MUCH DOES THE VACCINE COST?

It is free to get vaccinated. The cost will be covered by the state for those without insurance or by your medical aid scheme if you belong to one. 

The EVDS will automatically send patients without medical insurance to public sites and those with medical aid to private sites unless there is a lack of space.

Source: thesouthafrican.com

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