Toronto to launch four-day blitz of pop-up clinics to help hit 90 per cent vaccination target
|Toronto Star 15 Sep 2021 at 11:57|
Toronto is launching #DaysofVaxtion — a blitz of pop-up COVID-19 vaccination clinics aimed at the roughly 314,000 Torontonians not yet fully protected from the virus and who are most at risk during the pandemic’s ongoing fourth wave.
Mayor John Tory on Wednesday announced the Thursday-to-Sunday campaign, in prepared speech notes calling it “a mega-event made up of a series of micro clinics — smaller pop-up clinics put exactly where we know people need to get vaccinated and where we know people will be over the coming days.”
Toronto Public Health and hospital partner staff will immunize people in TTC stations, parks, malls and schools, including three mobile pop-up sites along Yonge Street, a clinic at Trinity-Bellwoods Park and subway stations including Sheppard, Islington and Warden.
In Scarborough, a health team will operate eight mobile clinics Saturday including ones at four malls — Golden Mile, Bridlewood, Parkway and Cedarbrae.
More locations will be announced in the city’s aggressive push to boost the rate of fully vaccinated Torontonians aged 12 and over from about 79 per cent now to the province’s 90 per cent target to stall growth of COVID-19’s highly contagious Delta variant.
Tory said more than 2 million Torontonians are fully vaccinated. To reach the 90-per-cent threshold the city must get another 314,000 residents fully protected, a figure that includes 158,000 who have already had their first dose.
Ontario data shows that residents who have not yet had two vaccine doses are most at risk from being infected as well as getting seriously ill, and are driving continued spread of COVID-19 that is prolonging the 18-month-old pandemic.
Tory said #DaysofVaxtion sites were chosen using the city’s “data-driven approach” to remove barriers to vaccination in areas that have low vaccination rates or where indicators suggest there is high risk of being infected.
Organizers also looked for sites where Torontonians will be passing by during their everyday lives.
The multi-clinic push to reach 90 per cent of eligible Torontonians follows the June mega-clinic at Scotiabank Arena that saw .
“We want as many people to be protected from this terrible virus as possible,” by the end of Sunday, Tory said in prepared remarks for a morning COVID-19 briefing. “And I know the more people who are vaccinated, the safer our entire city, and all the progress we have made, will be.”
Toronto is also banking on the province’s proof-of-vaccination certificate and mandates, along with vaccine mandates from many employers including the city itself, to help push the vaccination rate as high as possible.
Parts of Canada including Alberta , where political and health leaders did not impose as many restrictions or put as much of a focus on vaccination mandates, are suffering a crushing fourth wave, with overwhelmed intensive care units — a fate Ontario is trying to avoid.