Manitoba vax-a-thon organizers on pins and needles, hope for 20K participants

On Monday, the Region of Waterloo announced a mandatory vaccine policy for all employees and volunteers, and several of the municipalities it encompasses have followed suit. Getty Images

The province is hosting its first-ever walk-in vax-a-thon tomorrow with hopes to get 20,000 shots into the arms of Manitobans.

All supersites in Manitoba will be participating in this event and 8,000 Pfizer shots are being specifically earmarked for youth aged 12 to 17.

Vaccine Task Force logistics lead Johanu Botha told Global News that the event is strictly walk-in based and so people will not be fighting against those who have pre-booked appointments therefore he doesn’t expect huge wait times in the hot weather but in that case, there are plans in place.

Read more: Winners of Manitoba’s COVID 19 vaccine lottery will have to agree to go public

“We anticipate people moving in and out pretty fast and minimal line ups — now that said there might be some parts of the day where it gets busy and we’ve got nice partnerships with our municipal partners at each location to ensure that water and that sorta thing is available.”

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He adds that the event is coming at a critical time in the province’s vaccine rollout and reopening plan —  they have been planning this for a while and were just waiting for the moment where supply outweighed demand.

“If we have the folks that also want this then we have that golden trifecta of supply, capacity, and demand that can make sure we hit all those targets and we can re-open.”

The province continues to show strong immunization numbers, as compared to other Canadian jurisdictions and the move toward the finish line is in sight.

Read more: ‘The next few months will be critical’: Manitoba pushes to reach those leery of COVID-19 vaccine

Premier Brian Pallister had this to say about the event last week in a news release.

“Our government has spared no effort to bolster vaccine availability and accessibility, and to give Manitobans the information and support they need to roll up their sleeve — not once, but twice — and get fully vaccinated.”

“We are close to achieving all of our vaccination milestones earlier than we could have imagined. Now we just need that extra effort by every Manitoban not yet vaccinated to roll up your sleeve and push us across the finish line so we can safely, fully reopen,” he added.

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Click to play video: 'Manitoba Vax-a-thon starts Wednesday' Manitoba Vax-a-thon starts Wednesday
Manitoba Vax-a-thon starts Wednesday – Jul 13, 2021

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