Tillsonburg vaccination clinic has many openings for 12-and-older

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Sean Van Alphen, Reserve Superintendent with Oxford County Paramedic Services and supervisor of the vaccination clinic at the Tillsonburg Community Centre, wants to see every appointment filled.

“It’s been amazing to see so many folks from Tillsonburg and area through the clinic doors over the past month,” said Van Alphen. “Now that every age group over 12 is eligible, I want to see the rest of you. With no travel, no lineups, and no wait times, it is a smooth and efficient process.”

There are still many vaccination openings in Tillsonburg this week and next.

“We have spots as early as tomorrow (Tuesday),” said Jaime Fletcher, Program Manager of the Southwestern Public Health COVID-19 Vaccination Task Force, “for youth and their families, their grandparents. Anyone who is eligible we encourage them to head to our booking website and grab up one of those appointments because there are many, many appointments in the Tillsonburg area available on a daily basis.”

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On June 3 the Tillsonburg site began offering the Pfizer vaccine. Now anyone who is 12-and-older on the day of their clinic appointment is eligible for the Pfizer vaccine.

“We welcomed a number of youth to our Tillsonburg location to receive the Pfizer dose in their own community,” said Fletcher on Monday, adding it was “really successful.

“We looking forward to welcoming more youth over the next two weeks now that we have the Pfizer vaccine available in that location.”

Individuals are encouraged to book online at www.covidvaccinelm.ca or call 226-289-3560.

The Moderna vaccine, which had been offered in Tillsonburg since the clinic opened April 27, should be offered again at some point in the future.

A small number of qualified individuals will be receiving Moderna this week, said Fletcher, but the majority of the 320 doses being administered at Tillsonburg are Pfizer.

“The reason for that is that there is small number of Moderna vaccine that is currently available in the province. So we’re waiting to hear when more Moderna vaccine is coming in to our area.”

The health unit is ‘playing it week by week’ as far as delivering Moderna or Pfizer in the future depending on vaccine availability.

“That’s the way we’ve been playing this whole vaccine rollout is we do make spontaneous decisions based on how much vaccine we have available. We do know that the group who was previously vaccinated with Moderna will want Moderna again.”

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That will depend on when and how much Moderna the province secures, she said.

“We will do our best to communicate very clearly what’s being offered and where.”

The plan is to keep all three mass immunization clinics (Tillsonburg, Woodstock and St. Thomas) open as long as necessary – as long as vaccine availability allows.

“Certainly as we are seeing the shortened intervals being announced by the Ministry of Health, and it’s exciting, meaning that most of us are able to start thinking about having a shortened interval in between our first and second dose. So we may be done sooner, but again, we’re talking ‘Covid Time’ where everything changes hour by hour and day by day.

“We have no plans at this point to shut our Tillsonburg location, the need is still there.”

cabbott@postmedia.com

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