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Covid-19 Vaccine Injury No-Fault Compensation Scheme in the Pipeline

April 19, 2021

Department of Cooperative Governance

Draft amendments to Disaster Management Act Regulations setting out a Covid-19 Vaccine Injury No-Fault Compensation Scheme are in the pipeline.

The cooperative governance department seeks comment on the Draft Amendments to the Financial Sector Regulations until close of business on 19 April 2021.

A new Chapter 8 on Covid-19 Vaccine Injury No-Fault Compensation Scheme is proposed.

The plan is to set up the Scheme under the auspices of the health department.

The Draft Regulations describe the Scheme as an essential part of the CoVID-19 vaccination roll-out, “which is the most critical component of the national plan and response to alleviate, contain and minimise the effects of the disaster, and ultimately to end the State of National Disaster”.

The Scheme is designed to “provide expeditious and easy access to compensation for persons who suffer vaccine injury referred to in regulation 93(2) and (4)(b) as a consequence of a CoVID-19 vaccine contemplated in regulation 93(4)(c) being administered”.

The health department will be responsible for the administration of the Scheme.

The health minister will be responsible for setting up an adjudication panel and an appeal panel to deal with the adjudication of, and appeals in respect of claims.

A Governance and Oversight Committee, headed by a retired Judge, and comprised of medical, actuarial, legal and any other relevant experts, responsible for overseeing the policies, and reporting, of the Scheme and for advising the health minister is also in the pipeline.

Anyone who suffers a vaccine injury will be eligible for compensation under the Scheme.

Vaccine injuries to be covered under the Scheme include severe injuries resulting in permanent or significant injury, serious harm to a person’s health, other damage or death.

The draft amendments specify that claims can only be brought against national government or the relevant provincial government both of which are “vicariously liable for the conduct of the organ of state, service provider, health establishment, facility specified in regulation 93(4)(d), or person who was performing authorised functions relating to the distribution or administration of the vaccine in terms of the National Government’s vaccination programme”.