The Western Cape’s Department of Health is continuing to boost its efforts to get citizens vaccinated. The latest COVID-19 drive comes in the form of a mobile vaccination project named Vaxi Taxi.
The main function and mandate of the project and team members is to combat societal disparities and serve community members. According to a statement shared on social media by Western Cape Premier Alan Winde, the project, which could be described as a pop-up vaccination campaign, commenced on September and has already administered 1 042 vaccines as a result of the community initiative.
“During the preparation stage, each team member underwent thorough training. The EMS Vaxi Taxi program started out when the volunteers and EMS officials administered vaccinations at community soup kitchens, markets and whilst conducting home visits in various communities,” the statement said.
The statement also mentioned that the team has partnered with the Department of Education and began vaccinating matriculants at schools in the province, as many matriculants have not been vaccinated yet. Bridging the gap has become a priority to the team since the matric exams are fast approaching. EMS Director, Dr Shaheem De Vries, described the initiative as a great opportunity to build strong relationships with communities to keep one another safe.
“I am also thrilled that we have the opportunity to team up with the Department of Education and corporate partners, and we look forward to providing more opportunities for vaccinations to communities in the Western Cape,” De Vries said.
Each mobile site consists of two ambulances – one is used as a primary vaccination section, and the other as a secondary vaccination and resuscitation section. It also consists of an equipped gazebo and tarpaulin, used as the observation areas, and an admin section for registrations and essential paperwork. Intricate vaccine preparation and cold chain regulations are always adhered to.
EMS Vaxi Taxi Project Leader, Wayne Philander, mentioned that they have been working with community partners to identify locations to offer the COVID-19 vaccines as their goal is to reach every corner of the Western Cape.
“The aim of the EMS Vaxi Taxi is to serve communities and ensure that it reaches as many individuals as possible, whether it be at their workplaces and educational institutions, meeting people where they are,” Philander reiterated.
Picture: Facebook/Alan Winde