Africa-Press – South-Africa. DURBAN – THE Department of Health has slammed reports that people 65 and over can register for vaccines. Yesterday, messages began circulating on social media, sending communities into a frenzy.
“Vaccine registration is now open for people ages 65 and over. Please register the elderly for their vaccines as soon as possible. Even if you under 65 you can still register for now. Your turn will be according to the phased in approach,” the message claimed.
Spokesperson at the Department of Health, Popo Maja, said the message was not true.
“The Department of Health alerts the public (that) the rumours circulating on social media claiming that the registration is now open for the elderly people of 65 of age are obnoxious and completely false. These rumours are designed to cause panic and unnecessary public disquiet. We urge the public to ignore such rumours and disinformation. The Ministry of Health will make an announcement at an opportune moment,” Maja said.
South Africa has signed an agreement with Pfizer for 20 million dual shot Covid-19 vaccine doses, a government official told Reuters on Tuesday, boosting plans to start mass vaccinations from April.
Currently, over 278 000 healthcare workers have been vaccinated against Covid-19.
The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) has confirmed that government has secured 12 million doses from the global Covax facility. At least 2 million are due to arrive in SA by the second quarter of the year.
The NICD said the vaccine will be rolled out in a three-phase approach, that begins with the most vulnerable in our population.
: The country’s estimated 1.2 million frontline healthcare workers.
: Essential workers, persons in congregate settings, persons over 60-years and persons over 18-years with co-morbidities.
: The final phase will target 22.5 million members of the population over the age of 18. The target is to vaccinate 67% of the population by the end of 2021, in order to achieve herd immunity.