Gauteng Health MEC Dr Nomathemba Mokgethi during a visit to the Olivenhoutbosch and Atteridgeville vaccination sites over the past weekend, urged qualifying residents to go to their nearest vaccination sites opening daily including weekends to get vaccinated. This came after South African Covid-19 vaccination programme targets were announced.

The MEC mentioned that they have realised that many people are unable to make it through to vaccination sites during the week due to work and other personal commitments. The province had decided to open sites across Gauteng on weekends. She said eight sites in four of Tshwane’s districts had been opened and decided to operate during the weekend to ensure that as many people as possible received the vaccine.

“One of the residents I spoke to said he was happy that vaccination would now be open during the weekend as he was unable to make it during the week due to his job involving a lot of travelling. So we hope such people will be able to canvass for us and encourage others to come.”

Mokgethi said they had also picked up on reports that there were low numbers of men in the province reporting for vaccination. Regarding this, she said they would continue to use social media platforms as well as faith-based organisations to encourage and urge more men to get vaccinated. Although there were challenges experienced in vaccination efforts for persons 60 and above due to lack of transport, Mokgethi said this had partly been resolved with the intake of the 40 to 49 unit.

“Since we opened up the vaccination for other age groups, we have found that they now bring their elderly parents to vaccinate alongside them, and we hope this will ensure that more elderly are protected from this virus.”Student Violet Sebeo said she is anxiously awaiting her turn to get the vaccine as people witnessed a lot of people dying from the virus from last year up until the year 2021, and she had even tested positive for the virus herself. “I would urge more people to get vaccinated because it is better to be safe than sorry. If someone says they are not getting vaccinated, what will save them from this?” Sebeo said.

By: Mpho Khena.

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