By Charndré Emma Kippie
Launching the Covid-19 vaccination certificate
The Minister of Health, Dr Joe Phaahla, just launched the digitalised Covid-19 vaccination certification procedure, earlier this month on the 8 October 2021.
The government has explained that this certificate will allow for South African citizens to provide proof of their vaccination status using a QR code. In a media briefing, Dr Phaahla explained that this particular digital certificate would be beneficial in allowing all vaccinated individuals to safely access entertainment events, festivals, sports and recreational activities, and travel more freely – readying the tourism sector for business after a long period of inactivity.
These newly-instated vaccination certificates will likely also be recognised internationally, allowing for travel to places such as the UK – who has already confirmed that vaccinated South Africans may produce this document to gain entrance into their country.
“Our role is really to make this tool available to the nation so that we can provide people with proof of vaccination. This is so that they can have access to many amenities and activities which many of us have been missing”, said Phaahla.
Furthermore, he indicated that the certificate would act as an instrument geared towards bolstering the country’s economy.
“We call on all South Africans and other nationals in our country to come forward and be vaccinated. We now have a window of opportunity to protect ourselves ahead of an expected fourth wave [of infections] later this year”, Phaahla explained.
“The vaccines have proven to be safe and effective. Very few vaccinated people are falling ill.”
On Thursday, 7 October 2021, South Africa reported that 18,735,127 vaccines have been administered thus far, with 224,184 jabs given over the prior 24 hours.
Digital certification in focus
The Covid-19 vaccine certificate will be generated via an online government portal. This document will only be available to individuals who are fully vaccinated against Covid-19, whether they’ve received the Pfizer or Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
Individuals will be required to fill in their contact details, including their ID number and Electronic Vaccination Data System (EVDS) code.
Thereafter, individuals will be issued a one-time pin to confirm the authenticity of the information they have provided. This pin must then be used to access the final, digital Covid-19 vaccine certificate.
The Department of Health has, in addition, indicated that the QR code received by vaccinated individuals is not intended for general public use. However, the code may be utilised by specific outlets which will employ a specialised QR scanner.
Dr Phaahla emphasised that this will be considered as the initial introductory phase of the digital certificate. However, additional security features are set to be implemented in the near future.
How To Get Your Certificate
The Vaccination Certificate system will only be accessible to citizens who have received the Covid-19 Vaccine. Before receiving your certificate, you will need the following:
- Your RSA ID Number or Foreign Passport number or Asylum or Refugee number (Note this should be the same ID document number you presented when you got vaccinated).
- The cell phone with the number you included on your registration.
- Your vaccination code from the sms you received post vaccination.
Important: Make sure you have entered all the required details correctly.
Should you enter any information incorrectly, the system will return an error message including “details not found”. You can then contact The Covid-19 Public Hotline: 0800 029 999 for assistance.
For more information, visit https://vaccine.certificate.health.gov.za/
The design of the Vaccination Certificate will be enhanced to ensure that it remains up to date with local and international standards.
- Individuals will, then, need to download their updated vaccination certificate for it to remain valid.
- The Department of Health will advise on the availability of newer versions of the vaccination certificate as it becomes available.
- It is then the responsibility of the individual to make sure that their Covid-19 vaccination certificate remains current by following the communication released by the NDoH.
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