Update on the J&J Vaccination implementation study
The province has completed the rollout of its first tranche of vaccines as part of the J&J/Sisonke implementation study by administering its full allocation of the first batch of vaccines received. The Department will now begin rolling out its new allocation including to both metro and rural areas this week.
The first round of vaccinations focused on the Metro with healthcare workers, both public and private, taking up the vaccine at four sites: Groote Schuur, Tygerberg, Khayelitsha District Hospital and Karl Bremer.
This week, Gatesville Melomed hospital will be the first dedicated private vaccination site for healthcare workers in the private sector.
Healthcare workers in the Rural areas, both private and public, can now also take up the vaccine at three sites: Worcester, Paarl and George.
Second tranche of vaccines
The second tranche of vaccines arrived over the weekend. The province has been allocated 13 068 vaccines which will be delivered in two separate batches. Of this, 2 560 will be distributed to the Rural areas.
Sequencing of vaccines
Since we are receiving several deliveries of the vaccine, the Department has introduced sequencing to ensure equitable access, and that the most vulnerable and most at risk of exposure healthcare workers are vaccinated first.
According to this sequencing, vaccines will be allocated pro-rata per number of staff per facility. Within these allocations, further prioritization will take place taking into account:
- Individual vulnerability by age
- Individual vulnerability due to comorbidities
- Risk of exposure (patient facing vs non-patient facing staff)
- Criticality of setting (eg. working in critical care, Covid wards etc.)
Even though we follow the sequencing, we do so with speed as we are given the next tranche based on using it within the allotted time. As we continue to receive batches of vaccines, we commit to continue with vaccination so that all healthcare workers who are willing to be vaccinated get vaccinated.
The Sisonke implementation study vaccines are being administered over an eight-week period. We estimate that approximately 40% of healthcare workers in the province will be vaccinated in this timeframe with the available vaccines.
To ensure that we prevent any situation emerging where a non-healthcare worker poses as a healthcare worker during this first phase of this vaccination programme, we require all healthcare workers to show workplace identification, or to provide their Health Professions Council registration number as verification.
Phases 2 and 3 will cover larger numbers of residents and will include other frontline services, people in congregate settings, those at risk due to age or comorbidity, and finally, in phase 3, the general adult population. We are working hard to put all the systems in place to roll out these phases as soon as approved vaccines arrive.
Register for vaccine
During phase 1, only healthcare workers who wish to take up vaccination can register on the national electronic system: https://vaccine.enroll.health.gov.za. Once registered they will be issued with a voucher indicating vaccination site and date to go for the vaccination. Registered healthcare workers are asked to liaise with the relevant person at their workplace to book their appointment after they have received their voucher.
We will inform the public when they can start registering on the system.