Over 19,000 18–35 year-olds signed up for their vaccines on the Discovery Covid–19 Vaccine Navigator system on Friday, 20 August.
The surge in traffic to the website caused a temporary outage of Discovery’s vaccination booking system as thousands of people tried to make an appointment to get their vaccine.
“The site has since been restored and is back up and running,” a spokesperson for Discovery told MyBroadband.
“While we regret any delays in the booking process, we are very excited about the overwhelmingly positive response of people aged 18–34 years and are looking forward to helping them get vaccinated as quickly as possible.”
This came after Cabinet announced on Thursday that vaccinations would be open to everyone in South Africa over 18 years old from Friday.
Discovery said it saw over 62,000 logins on its Covid–19 vaccine portal between midnight and 11:00 on 20 August.
It said over 60,000 bookings were created since the announcement of opening up the 18 to 34 age group.
The brief downtime of Discovery’s online booking system due to an influx of users was a positive indicator for South Africa’s vaccination efforts, which showed signs of stalling in recent weeks.
South Africa’s daily vaccine doses administered peaked on 21 July — a week after vaccination registrations opened to people between 35 and 49 years old.
This past week, there was an uptick following the news that the government planned to open vaccinations to 18 to 34 year-olds earlier than originally planned.
On Friday, vaccinations surged in several provinces, including Gauteng, the Western Cape, and KwaZulu-Natal.
However, the total number of vaccines administered on Friday (252,379) came third to the highs seen on 21–22 July (272,946 and 253,431, respectively).