You can now register for the COVID-19 vaccine via WhatsApp or SMS

The Department of Health recently launched a COVID-19 vaccine registration portal through WhatsApp and USSD in South Africa.

This comes as the second phase of the vaccine rollout in South Africa is expected to resume on Monday, 17 May 2021. According to IOL, the service is only open for people over the age of 60 as well as healthcare workers which have not been vaccinated through the Sisonke protocol. As of 9 May, the number of health care workers vaccinated under the Sisonke Protocol remains 382 480.

How to register for the vaccine in SA

You can register via the following methods:

  • You can now register on the COVID Whatsapp number by sending ‘Register’ to 0600 123 456.
  • USSD – You can also register by SMS by dialling *134*832*your ID number.
  • No ID number – South Africans who don’t have an ID number can also dial *134*832# for assistance.
Image: Screenshot

The process is said to be similar to the Electronic Vaccination Data System (EVDS) Self Registration Portal which was set up as a website by the government. After providing your ID and medical aid number, users will be asked to read the EVDS privacy policy and accept it. They will then be required to input their personal identification data and register for a booking.

Time for phase two

Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said officials were ready to give the registered elderly their jabs and if you are unable to register by the methods mentioned above, you may simply go to the nearest vaccination center and they will register you on the spot.

“If you are 60 years or above we will also vaccinate you at the same time,” he said in a statement on the government’s official coronavirus website. “If you are not, we will register you but we may ask you to return for your vaccination- this is only because we really want to prioritise those who are most at risk of getting sick or dying of COVID-19. Please bring your ID and your medical aid card, if you have one, to speed up the process.”

Mkhize also revealed government hopes to inoculate 46.2 million South Africans by March 2022.