Here's what you need to do if you've lost your vaccine card or EVDS number

Business Insider SA

Lost vaccine card EVDS number sms
(Photo by Gallo Images/Misha Jordaan)
  • South Africa's department of health is almost ready to launch its digital Covid-19 certificate.
  • But to get this proof of vaccination with a scannable QR code, you'll need your Electronic Vaccination Data System (EVDS) number.
  • If you've lost the SMS containing the EVDS code, the department recommends calling the Covid-19 hotline.
  • If you've lost your vaccine card, you'll need to revisit the vaccination site with your identity document.
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For those vaccinated against Covid-19 under South Africa's vaccine rollout, replacing a lost card and finding the unique Electronic Vaccination Data System (EVDS) number can be done by a visit to the vaccination site.

South Africans have got a glimpse of the country's digital Covid-19 vaccine certificate. The South African Covid-19 Vaccine Certificate System briefly appeared online on Tuesday. This garnered a wave of national interest, following the pronouncement by President Cyril Ramaphosa that a digital certificate could be used to "facilitate travel" and "access to establishments and gatherings".

But the platform, which returned multiple errors when people tried to access their certificates, wasn't supposed to go live. It's still in a testing phase and "is not yet officially functional in a live environment" according to the department of health.

The first look at the system did, however, reveal some key details about South Africa's digital Covid-19 vaccine certificate, which is expected to be launched, officially, on Friday.

The system is aligned with guidelines issued by the World Health Organisation (WHO) in August. The certificate, which can be downloaded as a PDF, features a scannable QR code as proof of vaccination.

Those looking to get their certificates will need to provide their identity number – or passport or asylum seeker number – and personal details. The cell phone number linked to the registration on the EVDS must also be supplied so that a One Time Pin (OTP) – used to access the certificate – can be received.

The 12-digit EVDS number, also known as the Vaccination Code, is delivered via SMS to those who have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19. It can also be contained on the physical vaccination card – not to be confused with the shorter batch number – which is completed at the vaccination site.

An EVDS number will be needed to access the digital Covid-19 vaccine certificate. Those who have lost the SMS and vaccination card containing the EVDS number will need to retrace their steps.

"[They'll need] to go to the vaccination site with their ID [and] they will be able to check. Once they find your ID number on the system, it will give all of the information [like] your full name, where you were vaccinated, [and with] which vaccine," health spokesperson Foster Mohale told Business Insider South Africa about replacing a lost vaccination card.

"It will show your full profile and they can authorise that information [to be copied] onto another card."

Alternatively, for those with vaccination cards but no EVDS number, the health department recommends calling the Covid-19 Hotline on 0800 029 999.

(Compiled by Luke Daniel)

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