Health Minister Zweli Mkhize Picture: GCIS
Health Minister Zweli Mkhize Picture: GCIS

Mkhize launches Electronic Vaccination Data System, calls it ’future of healthcare in SA’

By IOL Reporter Time of article published Apr 16, 2021

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Cape Town – Health Minister Zweli Mkhize launched the official SA Covid-19 vaccination programme registration portal on Friday morning.

The Electronic Vaccination Data System (EVDS) is now available to the general public and invites all citizens aged 60 years and above to register for vaccination.

Labelled a ’’proud representation of the future of healthcare in this country’’ by Mkhize, all South Africans will access the vaccines through the same process – there will be no distinction between private and state healthcare users, with the exception that private healthcare users will input their medical aid details.

The system will assign a vaccination site closest to people’s homes or where they work – not based on whether a particular site is a public or private facility.

’’This launch marks a significant milestone not only for our vaccination campaign but for South Africa’s advancement towards Universal Health Coverage. This is the first time in our democratic history that a major public health campaign will be supported by one digital system for all South Africans,’’ Mkhize said at the virtual launch of the portal.

’’This is in line with the 9th pillar of the Presidential Health Compact, which commits to strengthening the health system by developing an information system that will guide health policies, strategies and investments.

’’Some of the key activities proposed in the presidential health compact have found expression in the development and establishment of the EVDS system for the general population. These include, by example:

  • Developing a system that complies with the Interoperability Standards for Digital health.
  • Capitalising the functionality of the South African Health Information Exchange Service to allow the secure sharing of data between the different systems that make up the Electronic Vaccination data System.
  • The development and implementation of procedures and systems for identity verification of users of the health system (both those in public and in private), expanding the capabilities of the Health Patient Registration System platform
  • Utilising the Business Intelligence Platform and Data lake functionality to standardised health outcomes reporting for both public and private sectors.

’’I am highlighting this because it is important to demonstrate the critical foundation that was laid by the leadership of our President and, subsequently, the commitment of the department to follow through on these determinations and manifest advancements towards the implementation of the National Health Insurance.

’’I must congratulate the development team, ably led by Ms Milani Wolmarans, for their stamina and sheer determination to ensure that this system is implemented on time and is user friendly for our citizens.

’’The President, myself as the Minister of Health, hundreds of thousands of Health Care Workers and now you, the citizens of South Africa, have or will all access the vaccines through the same process, by enlisting using this system – there will be no distinction between private and state health care users, with the exception that private health care users will input their medical aid details.

’’The quality of services will be the same for all of us and the system will assign a vaccination site closest to our homes or where we work – not based on whether a particular site is a public or private facility.

’’This system is therefore a proud representation of the future of healthcare in this country, under the NHI, which is typified by multi-sectoral collaboration and social solidarity. In this regard we are joined by representatives from Business for South Africa, because the realization of this system would not have been possible without the collaboration of the private sector and business at large.

’’This outcome shows that indeed our society is maturing in the right direction – a direction towards health systems strengthening as a unified force.’’

IOL

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