You can now register for a Covid-19 vaccine through WhatsApp in South Africa – what you should know

The Department of Health has launched a Covid-19 vaccine registration portal available through WhatsApp and USSD in South Africa.

You can now register for a Covid-19 vaccine through WhatsApp in South Africa – what you should know

The service allows eligible South Africans to sign up for a Covid-19 vaccination as part of the country’s official phase 2 and phase 3 vaccination programmes.

Phase 2 of the programme, which is set to begin next week Monday (17 May), will focus on people over the age of 60 as well as healthcare workers which have not been vaccinated through the Sisonke protocol.

The self-registration services can be accessed as follows:

  • WhatsApp – 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.

If a South African is younger than 60, the Department said it will send a message to the user notifying them when they do qualify for a vaccine.

If a user is over 60 years of age, the process is similar to the Electronic Covid-19 vaccine Data System (EVDS) Self Registration Portal which was set up as a website by the government.

Once supplying their 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.

Speaking in parliament on Thursday (6 May), president Cyril Ramaphosa said that the government has now finalised the contract for sufficient doses to vaccinate 41.5 million people.

In Q2 2021, three million vaccines are set to arrive from Johnson & Johnson, 4.5 million from Pfizer and an additional 1.5 million Pfizer doses through the Covax initiative.

“The plan is in place. The centres are in place. The people have been trained. The transportation is in place to transfer these Covid vaccine doses at the correct temperature. The medical aid schemes are supporting this process.

“When it comes to securing the health of our people by securing vaccines, the South African government is going to pull out all stops. If it’s necessary for the Finance Minister to come forward to for a supplementary budget, we’ll do that.”

South Africa reported 1,778 new Covid-19 cases on Sunday, taking the total reported to 1,596,595.

Deaths have reached 54,735, while recoveries have climbed to 1,516,256, leaving the country with a balance of 25,604 active cases. The total number of vaccines administered is 382,480.

Originally published at Business tech