A RACE AGAINST THE CLOCK TO VACCINATE SOUTH AFRICA'S POLICE FORCE
Johannesburg, 5 July 2021 — Can 180,000 policemen and women get vaccinated before the 1 August? This is the mission of police force medical scheme Polmed, which provides health insurance to 80% of South Africa’s police force.
Together with AfroCentric Group, Polmed is kicking off this vaccination drive today, 5 July, by opening up a closed vaccination site at Orlando Stadium in Soweto, Johannesburg, with the mission of vaccinating 20,000 active police force members in three days – starting with Minister of Police Bheki Cele.
Neo Khauoe, Principal Officer of Polmed says none of this would be possible without the wide range of support from AfroCentric which has a critical role to play in this drive to protect South Africa’s police. AfroCentric will help with storage of the vaccines, provide the nurses needed to administer the vaccines and supply all necessary consumables (i.e. syringes, masks, gloves, etc.)
AfroCentric Group CEO Ahmed Banderker says, “Our police force members play a critical role in our society at all levels. We need to make sure we are protecting them as much as they are protecting us. We are therefore excited to be working in unison with the scheme to achieve this goal. As the country’s largest black-owned healthcare group, we are perfectly positioned to comprehensively provide vaccination support where we are most needed.”
With just over 180,000 active police force members, including administration and support personnel, Ms Khauoe says this is no easy task but is crucial. “Due to the nature of their work dealing with the public daily, we hope our police force will take this drive very seriously and turn up in their numbers. We need to vaccinate as many police officers as possible so that they can work confidently with the public and protect their families as well”.
Once the three days vaccination drive at Orlando Stadium is over, Polmed will continue to roll out vaccinations at the Tshwane Policy Academy, nearby centres and police stations across the country to ensure that all provincial police force members have access to the J&J vaccine.
AfroCentric’s membership base of over 3.9 million includes members of GEMS, Polmed, Bonitas, Fedhealth and other medical schemes that support South Africa’s front-line workers. Through Wellness Odyssey, the company says it will utilise its network of experienced and registered nurses to police vaccination sites located in all corners of South Africa.
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