COVID Vaccine Registration – benefit from priority treatment!
People over the age of 60 are currently being given priority in terms of registering for their Covid-19 vaccination, and we urge you to make the most of this opportunity.
It may seem from popular news reports that the vaccination roll-out is running behind schedule, and you could therefore be thinking that there is no rush to register. However, the reality is that the supply of vaccines coming into the country determines the roll-out, and that the process has been carefully timed and planned to balance supply and demand.
With the vaccination of people aged 60 and older planned to start on 17 May 2021, we would like to encourage both NMAS members and non-members in that age group to register sooner rather than later. Research shows that this age grouping is the most vulnerable when it comes to Covid-19 vulnerability and mortality.
How to register
The National Department of Health (NDoH) has now opened its Electronic Vaccine Data System (EVDS) for those aged 60 and older to register. If you (and/or a registered dependant) are 60 years or older:
- Please visit the EVDS webpage, or send ‘Register’ via Whatsapp to 0600 123 456, or register by dialling *134*832* immediately followed by your ID number.
- Have your ID details at hand. South Africans who do not have an ID number can dial *134*832# for assistance.
- Have your Scheme details at hand and make sure to enter it when registering. In all likelihood, members of medical schemes will be assisted by their scheme to have their vaccination at workplace sites, pharmacies, and other private healthcare facilities, while people without medical scheme cover (or who have not entered their medical scheme details into the system) will be directed to public vaccination sites.
Why it is important to register
If as many people as possible register on the EVDS, the vaccine roll-out can be further refined and the NDoH can ensure that the most vulnerable people are vaccinated, with no valuable vaccines going to waste because they have expired.
Remember, registering on the EVDS system does not compel you to have the vaccine as you can change your mind at anytime.
For those of you who may have already registered, you will be receiving an EVDS-generated confirmation of your booking with further instructions on what you should do.
Why the need to get vaccinated
Covid-19 vaccination remains voluntary, but we would like to encourage you to get vaccinated – for your own and your loved ones’ sake, but also for our country to achieve the ‘herd immunity’ we need to return to some kind of normalcy.
We understand that some members may have concerns about having the vaccine, or have unique circumstances that may make getting vaccinated a challenge. Fortunately, much research has been done since the start of the pandemic, and there is a wealth of information to help you make an informed decision. If you are still wondering about whether to have the vaccine or not, or you have other questions around the vaccine’s efficacy or safety, please look through the documents linked below:
- NMAS Covid-19 vaccination FAQs
- Covid-19 vaccines myths vs fact
- Covid-19 vaccine side effects
- Phase 2 of the roll-out plan (including the importance of prioritising over 60s)
Keeping you updated
As you and your registered dependants may fall into different roll-out phases, the Scheme will send further communication about the registration process for the other groups as that information becomes available.
In the meantime
With infection figures steadily increasing in many provinces in the last week, it is more important than ever that we continue using non-pharmaceutical interventions, such as handwashing, physical distancing and wearing facemasks in public, to keep infection surges under control.