Vaccine sites gearing up to increase COVID inoculation capacity

Government is aiming to jab up to 300,000 people per day nationally by next month and here in Gauteng, the target is 100,000 vaccinations every 24 hours in the province.

An Education Department employee gets a COVID-19 vaccine shot at the Rabasotho community hall in Tembisa on 23 June 2021. Picture: Xanderleigh Dookey Makhaza/Eyewitness News

JOHANNESBURG - With signs that the third wave of COVID-19 infections has passed its peak in Gauteng, many vaccine sites are gearing up to increase their daily inoculation capacity.

Government is aiming to jab up to 300,000 people per day nationally by next month and here in Gauteng, the target is 100,000 vaccinations every 24 hours in the province.

Higher targets mean that more vaccine sites will have to be opened and additional nurses need to be trained to administer the shots.

It’s another busy morning at the Witkoppen Clinic in Fourways, where staff are hoping to vaccinate another 600 people today and at the forefront of this team is nurse, Johannes Mandla.

He barely has time to talk to the media accompanying Gauteng Premier David Makhura's visit to the facility - he's ready to call the next person to sit on a chair in front of him, so he or she can get a dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Mandla, who runs the emergency section of the clinic, said that he still found that many people were too scared to take the injection but there was no time to waste as they raced to help as many people as possible.

"There are two kinds of people: those who are still very scared but we try to make them calm but we try to push numbers but some are still hesitant but there are those coming through."

With 14 years of experience in the industry, he wanted to get down to business and was now chasing his own targets.

"I can do 700 hundred a day. I am hoping to increase that to about 1,000 at least," Mandla said.

There are many volunteer students helping out at the clinic but staff members at this facility have urged Makhura to provide more resources so that they too can push the number of inoculations to more than 1,000 a day.

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