Durban - Thirteen South African private hospitals have been added to the list of public hospitals that are vaccinating – for now – frontline health workers.
With more than 76 000 health care workers receiving the Covid-19 jab since the first batch of 80 000 Johnson & Johnson vaccines arrived in the country three weeks ago, the B4SA Hospital workstream, and the Hospital Association of South Africa, welcome the expansion of vaccine rollout sites.
According to B4SA Hospital workstream, among the considerations employed in the selection of the private hospital sites were the number of Covid-19 cases treated to date, their proximity to research and other healthcare facilities within their catchment areas, and to enable as wide a geographic spread of the vaccine rollout as possible with the limited numbers of vaccine doses available
“At each site, the National Department of Health requires that facilities first vaccinate their own workers at risk and those of the selected limited hospitals identified in their catchment areas,” a statement issued by Hospital Association of South Africa said.
The association said that gatekeeping will be a key measure to ensure an efficient rollout of the vaccines.
“Healthcare workers will receive an SMS that will direct them to the Sisonke website where they will be required to provide the necessary consent to receive a vaccine, whereafter an appointment will be scheduled at the identified vaccination site. Healthcare workers will be issued with a ’token’ or voucher.
“On arrival at the scheduled vaccination destination at the scheduled appointment time, healthcare workers will be asked to produce their electronic “token”, or voucher, and to provide an identification document (including passport), and proof of health facility employment or Health Professional Statutory Council registration. Each site will also have a pre-populated list of risk-stratified healthcare workers by hospital selected to participate in this next week to ensure they match people arriving with vouchers to be vaccinated,“ the statement said.
The association said that the private hospital sector was confident that their collaboration with the National Department of Health will be effective.
On Sunday, President Cyril Ramaphosa said the government had secured enough Covid-19 vaccine doses to administer 43 million jabs by the end of 2021.
Phase two of the vaccine rollout is expected to commence between late April and early May, once all health workers have been vaccinated.
Elderly people, essential workers, persons living or working in institutional settings and those with comorbidities will be inoculated during this phase.
“For this phase, we will be activating many more sites for vaccination in the public and private healthcare sector so that we can reach as many people in the shortest possible time,” Ramaphosa said.
“We have recently signed an agreement with Johnson & Johnson to secure 11 million doses. Of these doses, 2.8 million doses will be delivered in the second quarter and the rest spread throughout the year. We have also secured 20 million doses from Pfizer, which will be delivered from the second quarter.
“Additionally, we have secured 12 million vaccine doses from the Covax facility and are in the process of finalising our dose allocation from the African Union,” the president said.
The private hospitals that will begin vaccinating healthworkers:
- Ahmed Kathrada Private Hospital
- Gatesville Medical Centre
- Life Cosmos
- Life Peglerae
- Life Rosepark
- Life St Dominics
- Mediclinic Nelspruit
- Mediclinic Upington
- Mediclinic Limpopo
- Netcare Greenacres
- Netcare Milpark
- Netcare Pholoso
- Netcare St Augustine’s