South Africa vaccine
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  • There will be no charge – ever – to an individual receiving a Covid-19 vaccine, says the government.
  • If you are asked to pay, phone the Covid-19 hotline.
  • A R70 charge will be paid to private providers, to cover various costs, but they may only charge that to a medical aid or the state.
  • Phase 2 of the vaccine rollout is due to start on Monday.
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If anybody asks you to pay to receive a Covid-19 vaccine, you should report them, says the department of health.

With the second phase of South Africa's coronavirus vaccine rollout due to start on Monday, many private providers are expected to be administering jabs before the end of May. Qualifying recipients (initially those older than 60) will be able to choose such private providers when registering on the Electronic Vaccination Data System (EVDS).

Private pharmacies may stock different types of vaccines, depending on their logistics capabilities, allowing an effective choice of the type of vaccine to be received, though no such choice formally exists.

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But in one respect there will be no difference between government clinics and private pharmacies: recipients will never pay.

"The full cost of vaccination, including administrative fees, will be borne by medical aids for those who are insured, or the state for those who are not insured," says department of health spokesperson Lwazi Manzi.   

"No service provider may request a payment out of pocket (whether cash or deducted from a bank account or salary) from a client that is being vaccinated with a registered Covid-19 vaccine. 

"Clients who are requested to make out of pocket payments for a Covid-19 vaccine can call the Covid-19 hotline and share the details with government."

Private providers will be paid R70 to cover costs including the verification process of patient details, personal protective equipment (PPE) for staff, the preparation of the vaccines, and vaccine waste.

(Compiled by Phillip de Wet)

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