Dubai: About to get the COVID-19 vaccine? If you have an appointment at the One Central Vaccination Centre in Dubai, and are curious about what the experience may be like, here is all you need to know.
When was the facility opened?
The facility at One Central is the biggest vaccination centre operated by Dubai Health Authority (DHA). Khalfan Al Raeesi, Director of the One Central Vaccination Centre, spoke to Gulf News about what visitors can expect when they come to the facility for vaccination.
“One Central Vaccination Centre was opened on January 17, with a capacity of 4,000 clients a day. For now, we are providing the Pfizer-BioNtech and Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine,” he said.
One Central Vaccination Centre was opened on January 17, with a capacity of 4,000 clients a day. For now, we are providing the Pfizer-BioNtech and Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine.
How to book an appointment
You can book your appointment by downloading the Dubai Health Authority’s smartphone application – DHA – or by calling the authority’s hotline on 800 342.
To book an appointment using the DHA app, follow these steps:
1. Download the app – ‘DHA’, which is available for both Apple and Android phones.
2. Select the ‘Book COVID-19 vaccine’ service on the home page.
3. You will receive information on the vaccines that are available and what the priority categories are for each.
4. Tap on ‘Proceed to pre-assessment’.
5. You will then receive a number of questions which you need to answer, including whether you are:
a. a person of determination
b. a Dubai government employee
c. suffering from a chronic disease
f. planning to get pregnant in the next three months
You will also be asked if you have had a COVID-19 infection in the past three months or have received a COVID-19 or other vaccine recently.
6. If you meet the criteria for the target group, you will then be directed to a list of locations of health centres where you can get the vaccine. Select the location most convenient to you.
7. Next, you will be given an option for the available time slots for vaccine appointments. Select the time slot, and tap on ‘Preview and book appointment’.
8. Once you have checked the details, tap on ‘Confirm booking’.
9. You will receive a text message on your registered mobile number within a few minutes, confirming the appointment.
To book an appointment through the call centre, follow these steps:
1. Call 800 342.
2. Select the option for COVID-19 vaccine (1) and then the COVID-19 vaccine appointment (1).
3. You will be directed to an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) menu, through which you will need to answer the questions related to your health condition, and any previous COVID-19 infections.
4. Once you meet the eligibility criteria, you will be connected to a DHA representative, who will ask you for your Emirates ID or DHA Medical Record Number (MRN).
5. The representative will then help you with booking the appointment at a location of your choice.
6. Finally, you will receive a text message on your registered mobile number within a few minutes, confirming the appointment.
How can I reach One Central Vaccination Centre?
The One Central Vaccination Centre is located next to Dubai World Trade Centre. If you drive, you would need to head towards the World Trade Centre on Sheikh Zayed Road. When you are close to the business hub, you will start seeing road signs placed for the vaccine centre, helping you with the navigation.
There are ample spaces in the free parking made available for citizens and residents who are coming in to receive the vaccine, next to the centre.
Using public transport
You can also use public transport to reach the centre - whether through the Dubai Metro or by taking a bus.
The closest Metro station to the centre is World Trade Centre station on the Metro Red Line. The vaccination centre is 650 metres away from the centre, which is an 8-minute walk.
The closest bus station to the centre is the Novotel Hotel World Trade Centre bus stop. The following buses stop at the centre:
• Bus No. 29 (From Al Ghubaiba bus station, heading towards Dubai Mall)
• Bus No. 27 (From Gold Souq bus station, heading towards Dubai Mall)
• X22 (Al Qusais Industrial Area Terminal 2, heading towards Business Bay Landside bus stop)
The distance from the bus station to the centre is also approximately 650 metres, which would be an 8- to 10-minute walk.
Step 1: Registration
At the registration desk, you will be asked to provide your Emirates ID along with a copy of your confirmed appointment message.
“You can book the appointment either through the DHA app or the call centre. You will receive an SMS with your appointment time and location. Visitors first need to go to the registration desk, where they are checked in to the system. They need to provide their Emirates ID and phone number to complete the registration,” Al Raeesi said.
Once your details are registered, you will receive a colour-coded sticker, which is pasted on your Emirates ID – red for Pfizer-BioNTech and blue for Oxford-AstraZeneca. You will then be asked to proceed to the seventh floor.
Step 2: Checking vital signs and getting the vaccination
On the seventh floor, an attendant will check the Emirates ID and sticker to provide you with a token number, before you enter the waiting area. In the waiting area, a big screen flashes token numbers along with the vaccination booth you need to head towards.
The facility has 55 booths, and the waiting time is not more than a few minutes.
Once you enter the booth, a health professional will first check your vital signs, like your blood pressure, pulse and temperature, and do a pre-assessment. You will then be asked to show your Emirates ID and confirm your mobile number.
“There are certain questions that assess any underlying diseases or risk factors, or any other acute condition that prevents the client from receiving the vaccine. If everything goes smoothly, they receive the vaccine. This step of the process does not take more than six to ten minutes,” Al Raeesi said.
The health professional will then inform you of any minor side-effects you may experience, which includes soreness in the arm, a mild fever or headache.
Step 3: Observation area
Once you have received the vaccine, you will be asked to wait in the observation area for 10 to 15 minutes. This is where the vaccine recipients are observed for any effects, before they are able to head out.
The observation area has free water available, along with a café from where you can purchase food and beverages. Once you have received the first dose of the vaccine, you will receive an SMS with the date, time and location for the second dose. In case you do not receive an SMS you can always call the hotline and provide your Emirates ID to receive the message.
The appointment booking process can be easily completed from home, by following the steps listed above. The process of receiving the vaccination at the facility is also smooth and organised, allowing vaccine recipients to complete the inoculation journey easily.
“From the moment the client arrives to when they leave after spending some time in the observation area, the whole process does not take longer than 30 minutes,” Al Raeesi said.