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Aurum supports innovative vaccination drive-through

Aurum supports innovative vaccination drive-through

The Aurum Institute has continued to assist in the national COVID-19 vaccination campaign, this time by supporting the innovative Gauteng Department of Health (DOH) drive-through. This follows the successful Sisonke Implementation study, a collective effort by several research organisations- led by Aurum in the North West- which had almost 500 000 healthcare workers vaccinated.

South Africa has recently hit the milestone of 4 million people vaccinated, but with the country gripped by the third wave of COVID-19 infections, many more people need to be vaccinated for us to reach community immunity.

Quick and convenient

The drive-through, which is at the Christian Family Church in Bonaero Park in Ekurhuleni, allows for quick and convenient vaccinations.

“The church is mostly used on Sundays (when lockdown regulations allow) and is easily accessible with a large vehicle parking area. It was ideal for a drive-through vaccination site, “said Lungile Mbata, Aurum Programme Manager.

Mbata is currently seconded at the Gauteng DOH and assists with project management of the phase 2B vaccine rollout. “I support DOH with project plans, collation of information from all the districts and I also help out with site inspections at vaccination sites to check for readiness.  Now that we have the vaccination drive-through site up and running, I collect the information, monitor, and evaluate,” she said.  

Aurum conceptualised the drive-through and created the layout of the site. We also provided some equipment and deployed some staff from Aurum Clinical Research and Health Systems Divisions to support their Department colleagues.

Drive-through process

Members of the public who are eligible for vaccination are encouraged to register the national EVDS system and follow the directives they receive via sms.  However, people may also present to a vaccination site. At the drive-through, one stops at several points for screening, information sharing and vaccination, all while maintaining physical distancing in their car. “After vaccination you park in the waiting area for 15 minutes to check if you do not have any adverse reactions to the vaccine. You are then given information on what to do if you have any severe symptoms once home. If so, you call the hotline on your vaccination card or go to your nearest health facility with your vaccination card,” said Mbatha.

As a staff member in Aurum’s Clinical Research Division (CRD), Mbata also worked on COVID-19 vaccination trials. “It’s exciting to see the fruits of the work we are doing in clinical research in smaller numbers being rolled out. This is why we do what we do, to improve people’s health outcomes and positively impact public health,” Mbatha.

Aurum salutes our CRD staff members in Klerksdorp, Rustenburg, Pretoria and Tembisa for their dedication, working countless hours on COVID-19 clinical trials and the Sisonke Implementation study.

Watch our tribute to them here: