Don't wait, get vaccinated - David Makhura to elderly people

06 June 2021 - 00:00 By Pail Ash and Tanya Farber
Premier David Makhura said there should be no bureaucratic reason not to vaccinate people. Stock image.
Premier David Makhura said there should be no bureaucratic reason not to vaccinate people. Stock image.
Image: World Health Organisation/Afro

Gauteng residents over the age of 60 have been urged to visit their nearest vaccination site for a Covid-19 jab even if they have not received a text message confirming their appointment.

Premier David Makhura said there should be no bureaucratic reason not to vaccinate people. "We would like you to go to the nearest site that is open near you," he said at a Gauteng command council briefing on Friday. "If we have vaccines they will also be able to vaccinate you — you can't wait for the SMS forever."

By Friday there were 103 vaccination sites operating in the province, including 63 in the public sector. About 209,000 people have been vaccinated since the second phase began on May 17, said health MEC Nomathemba Mokgethi.

More than 149,000 people over 60 have had the jab. There are an estimated 1.3-million over-60s in the province, of whom 488,000 have registered for a vaccination.

"We do our best to get as many people vaccinated as possible," Mokgethi said.

Getting people to register is the biggest problem, but Mokgethi said a decision has been made not to turn away anyone over 60.

Since the start of the phase 2 rollout, Gauteng has received 196,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine, of which 71,000 arrived on Thursday, followed by 58,000 on Friday.

In the Northern Cape, where almost 16,000 people had been vaccinated by Wednesday, acting health department head Riaan Strydom said cold-chain logistics for the Pfizer vaccine mean the rollout has concentrated on the biggest population centres of Kimberley, Upington and Kuruman.

The Western Cape health department said vaccine site partnerships are under way between the public health sector, the City of Cape Town and private partners.

A mass vaccination site resulting from a public-private partnership opened in the northern suburbs of Cape Town on Friday.

Head of health Keith Cloete said "the success will very much depend on us receiving adequate supplies of vaccines".


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