MUT to open vaccination site on campus

Press release statement

For immediate release: 6 September 2021

Submitted by: The Department of Marketing & Communications

Via email: Hlophe@mut.ac.za

 

MUT to open vaccination site on campus

Mangosuthu University of Technology (MUT) will open a COVID-19 vaccination site at the institution on Tuesday, 7 September, in a bid to increase access to vaccination for staff and students at the University. The vaccination site initiative is a result of a collaboration between MUT and the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health.

Acting Vice-Chancellor & Principal at MUT, Professor Marcus Ramogale, said that the vaccination site was part of efforts by the University to ensure that staff and students protect themselves and the loved ones against the COVID-19 pandemic.

“As we know, September is the beginning of Spring. Spring symbolizes the beginning of a new life,” said Professor Ramogale. “In an attempt to ensure that we have this new life, the University has decided to open a new vaccination site on campus and this will happen on Tuesday, 7 September.”

The vaccination site will open its doors at a time when the South African government is ramping up its efforts to ensure that South African adults are vaccinated against COVID-19. Bringing the vaccination site to the MUT campus will increase access for both staff and students who will not have to share a vaccination space with other citizens, which often causes delays.

“We request all staff and students to use this vaccination site so that we can all be vaccinated to combat this pandemic. If all those who are not vaccinated go to the site, I am sure this pandemic will come under control and we would have contributed to ensuring that there is indeed a new life on our campus,” said Professor Ramogale.

The vaccination site will be located at the computer laboratory formerly used by students with disability in the main campus.

For the COVID-19 Task Team (CTT) convener and Head of the Clinic at MUT, Sister Nomusa Mkhwanazi, having an on-campus vaccination site is evidence of the university’s commitment to do all that is required to protect staff and students from the pandemic. At the heart of having the site on campus is the desire to make the process as inconvenient as possible for members of the university community. Sister Mkhwanazi and her team will be hard at work ensuring that the process is quick and smooth for those vaccinating.

“We will place two clinic gazebos outside for registration and verification from the Electronic Vaccination Data System (EVDS) and set up tables for screening before inoculation, two inoculation stations behind the screens, a couch for untoward reactions (which we have been assured are uncommon), the 15-minute waiting area, and the discharge desk at the counter on the left as one leaves the room,” said Sister Mkhwanazi.

The on-campus vaccination site will enhance efforts by various MUT stakeholders, including the Student Representative Council (SRC), to get all the students vaccinated. The SRC committed to lead from the front and be the first to be vaccinated at the on-campus site in a bid to encourage fellow students to take the lifesaving jab. SRC Secretary General, Mbali Ntshingila has already taken the lifesaving COVID-19 vaccine.

Meanwhile, the SRC has been engaged in efforts to encourage other students to register for and get vaccinated. Although the university, through Higher Health, arranged for MUT staff and students to have their dedicate vaccination cue at the Umlazi Township D Section Clinic and Prince Mshiyeni Hospital, getting there is often a discouraging factor for staff and students.

Students, in particular, are the biggest university stakeholder amounting to over 14,000 compared to just over 600 staff members. Getting these students vaccinated is MUT’s top priority since government extended vaccination to the 18-34-year bracket starting on 20 August 2021. This has meant vigorous campaigning by the Department of Marketing and Communication at MUT targeting students and setting up vaccine registration drives in campus.

Senior Director: Marketing and Communication at MUT, Mbali Mkhize said that having a vaccination site on campus will enhance her department’s campaigns in that the department’s campaign efforts will also be guided by numbers of those using the site.

“Having a vaccination site on campus is a bold move by the university to show our students and staff that the institution cares about their well-being,” said Mkhize. “We are confident that our staff and students will take advantage of the proximity and convenience of having a vaccination site on campus to protect themselves and their loved ones. The COVID-19 vaccine is a passport to our future; it is the only one students can protect them dream of graduating with a qualification from MUT.”

Radio and multimedia reporter’s notes:

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