GrandWest has become the first approved hospitality and leisure industry Covid-19 workplace vaccination site in the Western Cape, and the third in the country.

The Sun International-owned complex, along with its Sun City and Wild Coast Sun resorts, are the industry’s first to be inspected and approved by the Department of Health, and to begin administering vaccinations.

The site will be located in GrandWest’s Market Hall, adjacent to the Grand Arena, and will be open between 9am and 3pm every Monday, Wednesday and Friday until the first week of October.

The GrandWest vaccination programme will begin on Monday, 16 August.

The site will have five of vaccinators working in five cubicles. In week one the site aims to administer around 250 Pfizer vaccinations per day steadily increasing as the week’s progress.  A portion of the daily vaccines will be reserved for GrandWest staff until they have all been immunised. The remaining daily shots will be available to the public.

“We initially looked into the feasibility of offering vaccines to our staff, their families and our concessionaires, but we have a strong relationship with our local communities so we wanted to look after them too. By partnering with the Department of Health we now have the capability to offer vaccines to a far greater number of people.” said GrandWest General Manager Mervyn Naidoo.

Naidoo said the property hopes to administer approximately 8000 vaccines over the next six to seven weeks, after which time they will assess the continued need for the site, “As more suburban facilities make their premises available for vaccinations, so we may find the pressure eases. We will be guided in this by the Department of Health”.

The vaccination centre will operate as a secondary site for the nearby Ruiterwacht Clinic. Doctors and medical staff from our onsite clinic will be responsible for medical oversight and provision of the vaccines. GrandWest will be responsible for the administration of the site which includes managing queues, screening and registrations. Representatives from the Department of Health will be on hand, although GrandWest is confident that the process will be seamless.

“We may be the first hospitality and leisure industry vaccination site to open in the province, but we hope we will soon be overtaken by many more. Our industry has been particularly hard hit by the Covid-19 pandemic and if we don’t reach critical mass with the vaccination rollout, thousands of jobs could be lost. We are grateful for the support of our regular casino customers through this difficult time, but our restaurants have suffered enormously and many of our regular entertainers have been unable to work since the start of the pandemic so we are willing to play any role we can for them to be able to work again,” said Naidoo.

To be eligible for the vaccination, people should have valid identity documents and they should be registered on the national EVDS website. In line with the government roll out of vaccines, the site will be open to anyone aged 35 and over, and to 18+ year olds from 1 September.

Visitors can access the site from the front entrance to GrandWest, or from the back Welcome Centre at the Grand Arena entrance.

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