28 January 2013

South Africa: Home Affairs Set to Take Online Birth Registration to All Hospitals

Photo: http://umuziphotoclub.blogspot.com/
File photo: Online birth registration is to ensure that all births are registered on time.

Pretoria — The Department of Home Affairs says it plans to have an online birth registration facility at all hospitals and clinics in the country.

Although no timeframe has been set, the department on Monday said it was looking at implementing the campaign speedily.

This, according to the department, is to ensure that all births are registered on time.

"Our intention is to have all the hospitals connected to the system. We are hindered because some hospitals are encountering problems with electricity and some other factors," said Home Affairs spokesperson Lunga Ngqengelele.

The department launched the National Population Registration campaign in 2010.

"The installation of birth registration resources at health facilities with maternity facilities is and remains a high priority for the department," Ngqengelele said.

Through the campaign, mothers are encouraged to register their children within 30 days from the date of birth.

According to the department, the plan is to install online birth registration resources in 795 targeted health institutions with maternity facilities.

To date, 324 hospitals and clinics are online connected health facilities; 151 (46.60%) are in rural areas and 173 (53.40%) are in urban areas.

Out of the 324 online connected health facilities, 55 (16.98%) are private health facilities and 269 (83.02%) are public health facilities.

Last year, Home Affairs Minister Naledi Pandor and her deputy visited hospitals in Cape Town and Johannesburg as part of the department's birth registration campaign.

At that time, the department emphasised the importance of birth registration within 30 days of delivery, in line with the Department of Home Affairs' National Population Registration (NPR) campaign.

The Department of Home Affairs has also signed a MOU with the Department of Education in order to ensure that children in need of birth certificates are assisted.

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