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Coronavirus: City of Vernon to use rec centre to help North Okanagan vaccination efforts

Vials of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine and syringes.
Vials of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine and syringes. Robin Utrecht / ABACAPRESS.COM

With B.C. having launched the second phase of its COVID-19 immunization plan, the City of Vernon said it plans on using the rec centre to help local health officials vaccinate people.

In a press release, the city said the main floor of the Vernon Recreation Centre Auditorium and the Sunset breakout room will be converted into temporary vaccination clinics.

The changeover will begin Monday, March 8, and will last for approximately eight months, or until Interior Health no longer needs them.

Read more: B.C. rolls out COVID-19 vaccination plan for those over 80 and extends time between doses

“The use of the auditorium for the vaccination clinics will be for a limited time, and the benefits to the Greater Vernon community outweigh any inconvenience that may occur,” said Mayor Victor Cumming.

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“We are happy to be working with Interior Health to host these vaccination clinics and we are looking forward to a time this fall when we can hopefully return to more normal activities.”

The city said it’s working on finding alternative spaces and programs that had been booked into the auditorium.

“The use of the auditorium for the vaccination clinics will have some impact on public usage,” said Doug Ross, director of recreation services.

“However, recreation services has already identified alternative locations for most programs and staff will be in touch with user groups to discuss possible alternative locations for their events.”

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As of March 8, booking will be open to seniors age 90 and over and Indigenous seniors age 65 and over. To book an appointment, call 1-877-740-7747, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., seven days a week.

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The age eligibility of those who can call to book appointments will change over time.

For more about Interior Health and its phase two vaccine rollout, click here.

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“I encourage all residents in the Vernon area to make your appointment when you are eligible for a COVID-19 vaccination,” said Dr. Karin Goodison, Interior Health medical health officer.

“This immunization plan is designed to save lives, stop the spread of COVID-19 and move us all toward a return to pre-COVID days.”

For more information from Immunize BC about dose timing, vaccine allergies, timing, and more, click here.

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