To achieve herd immunity, South Africans are being encouraged to get the COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine, which is recommended by the World Health Organization for efficacy against serious illness when infected by COVID-19, is now widely available in South Africa.
Now, to help South Africans register, track and prove their COVID-19 vaccination, the government has launched the Electronic Vaccination Data System.
What is the EVDS?
The Electronic Vaccination Data System is a government vaccine database and vaccine management system.
The system is designed to track how many eligible South Africans have been vaccinated, notify those who’ve signed up of their eligibility, and alert recipients when they’re eligible for the second dose.
Do You Need to Register on the EVDS to Get the Vaccine?
To help plan for supplies, manage vaccination site availability, and manage the demand for vaccines, the government requires that those who intend to get the COVID-19 vaccine are registered with the EVDS. So, even if you plan to get the vaccine from a private clinic, you will still need to be registered on the EVDS.
How Do You Register on the EVDS?
The government has made registering on the EVDS simple. You can register using a USSD code, via the website, or on WhatsApp; you can even register by telephone, depending on your preference.
If you’re going to register on the EVDS, you can follow the step-by-step guide below to help you get started:
Registering for the EVDS via USSD Code
You need airtime to register via USSD code, but the process is simple and only takes a few minutes to complete.
Step 1: Dial *134*832#
If you have a passport or refugee number, dial *134*832#. However, if you have a South African ID number, you can dial *134*832*ID NUMBER#
Step 2: Follow The Prompts
You will then be taken to a screen where you can follow the prompts to get registered. Once you’ve been registered, you will receive a confirmation SMS of your registration.
Registering for the EVDS Online
Registering via the website allows you to schedule your vaccine with ease. However, now that many vaccine sites allow walk-in appointments, you may not require this feature.
Step 1: Visit the EVDS Website
Visit the EVDS website on https://vaccine.enroll.health.gov.za
Step 2: Confirm Your Age
On the website, you will be required to confirm that you’re 18 years or older before being able to register.
Step 3: Input Your Details
You will then be required to input your ID number and other particulars like your cellphone number and address.
Step 4: Choose A Date, Time, and Vaccine Site
Once you’ve completed the above, you will be able to choose a vaccination site and schedule a date and time to get the vaccine. If for whatever reason, you need to reschedule your vaccination, you can do that by visiting https://vaccine.booking.health.gov.za.
You will also receive a confirmation SMS with all the details of your registration.
Registering for the EVDS through WhatsApp
If you want to save on data, you can also register through WhatsApp.
Step 1: Click on the EVDS WhatsApp Link
Go to: wa.me/27600123456?text=register and click send.
Step 2: Follow The Prompts
Once you’ve been redirected to WhatsApp, follow the prompts. You will receive confirmation of your registration via SMS and the next steps to follow.
Registering for the EVDS on the Phone
To ensure that South Africans without access to smartphones or the internet or who don’t have the skills to use these options can still register to be vaccinated, the government has also implemented a toll-free telephone option.
You can call 0800 029 999 Mondays to Friday between 7:00 am, and 8:00 pm or Saturdays and Sundays between 8:00 am and 6:00 pm. Once you’ve completed the registration process on the phone, you will receive an SMS confirming your registration.
Frequently Asked Questions About the Vaccine and EVDS Registration in South Africa
- Who Can Get the COVID-19 Vaccine?
The vaccine is now available for all South Africans aged 18 and over. However, the government is looking at making it available for children aged 12 to 17.
However, even if you meet these criteria, if you have been infected with COVID-19, you need to wait 42 days from the date of infection – or confirmed infection – to get the COVID-19 vaccine. This means that 30 days after you haven’t displayed symptoms of COVID-19, you can get your vaccine.
- Can I Choose my Vaccine Provider?
Currently, there are four vaccines in use in South Africa:
- Pfizer vaccine
- AstraZeneca vaccine
- Corona Vac vaccine, and
- Johnson and Johnson vaccine
While these vaccines have different efficacy rates in preventing serious illness if you are infected with COVID, South Africans can’t choose which vaccine they can get.
Since South Africa doesn’t have that much supply of vaccines, the government has distributed available vaccines as they receive the doses. Doing it this way also ensures there isn’t a bottleneck in the system because South Africans are waiting to get a specific vaccine or using the supplies of one vaccine.
- Where Can You Go to Get The Vaccine?
The government has partnered with various private providers, including Clicks and Dischem, to ensure getting the COVID-19 vaccine is as convenient as possible. However, you will still need to register on the EVDS before being able to book an appointment through a private clinic.
- Do You Need To Pay to Get the COVID-19 Vaccine?
To ensure South Africans who want to get vaccinated can get vaccinated against COVID-19 is free.
- Is The COVID-19 Vaccine and Vaccine Passport Compulsory in South Africa?
As more of the South African population gets vaccinated, misinformation around the vaccine being compulsory is being spread. Being vaccinated is not compulsory. However, some private businesses have decided to make vaccination a requirement to reduce exposure in the workplace.
Furthermore, when you visit the Electronic Vaccination Data System, it clearly states that vaccination is not compulsory but encouraged to those who are eligible.
However, the vaccine passport is compulsory for those who want to travel abroad. Most countries have implemented some form of vaccine passport so that quarantining when entering the country is unnecessary.
The government is also looking at ways to make vaccine passports available so that vaccinated individuals can participate in activities and gatherings that could become super spreader events if participants are unvaccinated.
If you have any more queries about the EVDS – or vaccination in general – you can contact 0800 029 999.