The Department of Health launched South Africa’s digital COVID-19 vaccine certificate system on Tuesday, 5 October 2021.
This follows President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement in his address to the nation last week. Ramaphosa said the system is based on the World Health Organisation’s guidelines and is in line with international best practices.
“The Department of Health will soon be rolling out a vaccination certificate, which will provide a secure and verifiable proof of vaccination,” he explained.
“It can be used to facilitate travel, access to establishments and gatherings and other forms of activity that require proof of vaccination status.”
South Africa’s digital COVID-19 vaccine certificate: How to get it
To get and download South Africa’s digital COVID-19 certificate, you need to visit the official portal here: https://vaccine.certificate.health.gov.za/
Next, click on the “Get my vaccine certificate” button, after which you will be asked to enter your ID. At the time of publishing this article, the identity types available on the portal were RSA identity number, RSA passport number, or asylum seeker/refugee number.
Once you fill the form with your ID number, name, surname and Electronic Vaccination Data System (EVDS) vaccination code, you will then need to provide your cellphone number.
The portal will subsequently send a one-time pin (OTP) via SMS to the number you provide. Enter the OTP on the portal to access your digital vaccine certificate.
The digital certificate is linked to the physical vaccination certificate issued to those who are fully vaccinated with a single-dose Johnson & Johnson or two-dose Pfizer vaccine.
Download as PDF or scan as QR code
Once accessed, the digital vaccine certificate can be downloaded as PDF. Holders can then either use it on their mobile phones or print it out.
Furthermore, the portal allows users to create a QR code confirming their vaccination status. This code can then be scanned from a mobile device when needed.
However, a message on the portal stated, “The QR Code generated is not intended to be readable by the general public. It is meant to be used by entities requiring to verify the card’s validity, using a Vaccine Certificate System inbuilt QR scanner which will be available in the near future.”