The village of Burns Lake began its COVID-19 vaccination for all age groups 18 and above, last week.
The first two community clinics organized by Northern Health, are being held at the Curling Club at Lakeside Multiplex in Burns Lake from Apr. 6 to Apr. 10 and from Apr. 12 to Apr. 16.
The province has stepped into phase 3 of the vaccine roll-out with the system opening up for those born in 1950 or earlier. However, as of Mar. 25, Northern Health opened up its booking line to anyone over the age of 18, setting the stage for a multi-day clinic. This followed the health authority’s decision to concentrate on smaller communities for now.
Granisle also had its community-wide clinic, open to all age groups from Apr. 7 to Apr. 9 and as per Vicky Rensby, the health services coordinator for Northern Health for Granisle, Burns Lake and the Southside region, Granisle’s vaccination drive was a success.
Rensby also said that the Burns Lake clinic was aiming to vaccinate at least 180 to 190 people each day.
“The smooth running of the clinic is possible because of the hard work of my staff. They are the ones managing the daily intake and ensuring things move along without any problems,” she said.
People who have booked their appointments are expected to arrive not more than five minutes before their appointment time. They are then asked to take off their own mask and handed a medical mask to wear. After sanitizing their hands, they are asked to undergo an initial screening where they are asked to fill out a self-assessment form. They are then redirected to an empty vaccination booth. Everyone who gets vaccinated is asked to wait for 15 minutes after their shot to ensure they aren’t feeling any severe side effects.
Several community members have already taken to Facebook to praise the well-organized efforts at the clinic. From “friendly, prompt excellent service above and beyond” to appreciating the behind-the-scenes efforts that went into organizing the clinics, Burns Lake community has been singing praises of the vaccination clinic.
These vaccination clinics are not the first for Burns Lake as health care workers and those who care for senior citizens, as well as several senior citizens received their first shots earlier this year.
Community clinics in Burns Lake and on the Southside March 16 and March 17 resulted in approximately 800 shots given.
Southside and area clinics begin this week from Apr. 13 to Apr. 17 and Apr. 20 to Apr. 24.
“Several people still don’t know that this mass vaccination effort is underway here right now. I hope everyone who wants the shot, gets one,” said Rensby, adding that more clinics would be organized depending on how many people still need to be vaccinated in the future.
Rensby has now been handing out fliers for the vaccination clinic.
To book an appointment, Burns Lake and Southside residents can call between 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. everyday on 1-866-481-2175.
– With files from Rod Link