Public Health Sudbury & Districts achieves major milestone in bringing COVID-19 vaccine to the most vulnerableIssued: Wednesday, February 10, 2021
Public Health Sudbury & Districts has achieved an important milestone in the journey to protect the area’s most vulnerable from COVID-19. By immunizing all consenting residents of area long-term care and high-risk retirement homes in addition to residents and staff of Elders’ lodges, Public Health has met the provincial target date of February 10. Through extensive planning and partnership with homes and area paramedics, a total of 1729 individuals were immunized with their first dose of the COVID-19 Moderna vaccine.
“We have a long way to go but it is a joy to celebrate this milestone. As we see ongoing outbreaks in these vulnerable homes and as we witness the emergence of the more transmissible variants of COVID-19, we are all energized by the vaccination program,” said Dr. Penny Sutcliffe, Medical Officer of Health with Public Health Sudbury & Districts. “I want to thank everyone involved—thank you for your patience with us as we work our way through the vaccine supply challenges. This is an unprecedented effort, requiring extensive planning, coordination with many partners, and the ability to quickly change course to adapt to new circumstances. I know that all involved are motivated by the singular purpose of getting vaccine in arms as soon as possible,” said Dr. Sutcliffe.
In addition, residents of the Wikwemikong Nursing Home, the first people in Public Health’s service area to receive the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, have now also received their second dose of the vaccine. The second doses for all other residents will be scheduled over the coming weeks in accordance with second dose requirements.
“As more vaccine is expected to arrive in the coming weeks, we are dependent on the Province to provide us with those vaccines to continue to immunize our community,” said Dr. Sutcliffe. “Direction around which priority populations are next in line to receive the vaccine will also come from the Province. We are ready and eager to continue our efforts.”
Despite the recent vaccine delays announced federally and provincially, Public Health remains dedicated and continues to adapt its plans to be ready to offer vaccinations to identified groups as efficiently as possible. The vaccine is a safe and effective tool in stopping the spread of COVID-19 and protecting our communities, including the most vulnerable.
Public Health will communicate the availability of vaccine for specific groups as the province provides additional direction. Vaccinations will be offered on an appointment basis for eligible recipients, and details of clinics will be shared publicly when plans are confirmed.
To prepare for local vaccination efforts, Public Health released the Public Health Sudbury & Districts COVID-19 Vaccination Program Playbook (PDF, 4 MB). The Playbook outlines local vaccination efforts and details local plans. To meet the needs of the community and efficiently offer the vaccine in a timely manner, Public Health’s short- and long-term vaccination efforts could include on-site clinics, such as in congregate settings for specific populations, community-based clinics where the vaccine is available at local sites, and in health care provider practices and venues like pharmacies.
The status of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout is evolving rapidly. As new developments about vaccine availability and distribution are known, Public Health remains committed to providing timely updates. For more information or if you have questions about the COVID-19 vaccine, please visit phsd.ca/COVID-19 or call Public Health Sudbury & Districts at 705.522.9200 (toll-free 1.866.522.9200).