Gauteng Premier David Makhura.Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency(ANA)
Gauteng Premier David Makhura.Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency(ANA)

Covid-19: Public asked to assist elderly in registering for vaccine

By Goitsemang Tlhabye Time of article published May 11, 2021

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Pretoria - With the advent of the third wave of Covid-19 fast approaching in Gauteng, the public has been asked to assist with getting the elderly registered for the government’s next phase of vaccination efforts.

Premier David Makhura said the command centre had noted a steady increase in the number of new infections across the province, indicating that the third wave was approaching.

He said there had been an increase in the number of new cases, particularly in Tshwane, Emfuleni and Johannesburg in the past two weeks.

Areas most affected in Tshwane include Atteridgeville, Laudium, Pretoria central, Hercules, Danville, Saulsville, Lotus Gardens.

By yesterday morning, there were 56 new cases in that region alone.

Other regions in Tshwane that showed a high number of new infections included Region 4, which includes Waterkloof, Olievenhoutbosch, Silverton and Centurion with 39.

There were also 36 new cases in Mamelodi, Eersterust, Silver Lakes, Garsfontein and Queenswood.

The province was also, according to Makhura, monitoring the hospital admissions, mortality and an increase in mobility.

He said that since it launched its two-week vaccination registration campaign targeting persons older than 60 years on April 20, only 235 202 had registered.

Makhura said they were targeting residential facilities for older persons, community-based service centres, social grant paypoints and households of the elderly through the assistance of 10 000 community workers. In the past week, 21 435 persons over the age of 60 were reached through door-to-door campaigns and by visiting residential facilities.

Makhura said it was encouraging that as of last week Thursday, 1 004 people had been successfully registered through the Gauteng Hotline.

In Tshwane alone, there had been only 2 343 elderly persons registered.

“We all have a responsibility to protect the elderly by helping them register so they can be vaccinated because vaccination is a safe and effective way to prevent disease and save lives.

“The Covid-19 vaccine and non-pharmaceutical measures are the most effective ways to prevent the transmission of infection.”

DA health spokesperson Jack Bloom said he too was concerned that only 235 000 out of 1.3 million people over 60 in Gauteng had registered for the Covid-19 vaccine.

Vaccinations are due the start next Monday.

Bloom said it was important for as many vulnerable people as possible to be vaccinated as he too alluded to the possibility of the third wave of infections starting to show signs of picking up momentum.

Bloom said the two available vaccines being administered in the country, Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer, had proved to be effective in preventing severe illness and death from Covid-19, with a good safety profile.

“It is clear that the benefits outweigh the very small risks of vaccination which can be managed by careful monitoring.

“Mass vaccinations of vulnerable people will help our hospitals avoid being flooded by patients, thus we are urging all persons over 60 to get registered,” Bloom said.

Pretoria News

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