Middlesex-London COVID-19 vaccination plan aims to vaccinate 3,000 per day – London

As part of the Middlesex-London COVID-19 vaccination plan, the health unit plans to create three more mass vaccination clinics in the region to reach a goal of 3,000 vaccinations per day.

In the preliminary release, the Middlesex-London Health Unit’s plan outlines how the health unit and its partners will work towards getting 75 per cent of all eligible recipients in the city of London and Middlesex County vaccinated for the coronavirus.

“We will have one site in the county of Middlesex and more than one site in the city of London,” London Medical Officer of Health Dr. Chris Mackie said.

Mackie said there are at least 12 areas currently under consideration but that more work is needed to determine which are best.

Part of the rollout includes a planning table that meets weekly to co-ordinate and align vaccine activities throughout the southwestern region, with representatives from the Middlesex-London Health Unit, Huron Perth Public Health and Southwestern Public Health regions.

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The plan outlines four objectives, including achieving a 75 per cent coverage in as short a time as possible and ensuring a prioritized and transparent distribution to minimize death.

The other two objectives outlined are providing clear and consistent education and maintaining public confidence.

The first phase of the Ontario government’s vaccine rollout focuses on high-risk individuals, high-risk health care and Indigenous Peoples.

Outlined in the plan is the estimated population size for each phase in the Middlesex London region, with the first phase consisting of an estimated 50,292 people.

The second phase aims to vaccinate an estimated 197,438 people, which does not account for those in congregate care settings like shelters and group homes, as well as other at-risk populations. A total for the third age grouping, those remaining who are 16 years of age or older, is not known.

Last week the health unit completed vaccinations for all long-term care homes and on Wednesday completed vaccinating residents in all the region’s high-risk retirement homes.

Mackie said when it comes to vaccine rollout in the second phase, many things are not set in stone yet, so he hopes that gives health officials some flexibility to deploy the vaccine based on where it’s needed most at the time.

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“I know people will want to say certain groups will be higher on the priority list but that isn’t what we have control of here — the local level is mostly how we deliver it, not to whom,” he said.

A date is not set for when a second vaccine clinic will open. Mackie said that right now that is determined by vaccine supply.

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For this week and the next, the vaccine clinic and the Western Fair Agriplex is closed while Canada faces a vaccine shortage, in part due to a production delay at Pfizer’s factory in Europe.

The company is scaling up its manufacturing capacity in Belgium — a move it said would impact the vaccine’s production for a “short period.”

Shipments have been reduced by an average of 50 per cent over a four-week period between January and February.

Over the next two weeks, Canada is set to receive 149,000 doses of that vaccine — one-fifth of what was previously promised.

The health unit is asking those living in the region to provide feedback on the plan on its website by Feb. 3 to help health officials refine it.

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—With files from Rachael D’Amore

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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