City of Calgary launches vaccine vans, outreach program

An artist's rendering of vans that will be part of the City of Calgary's vaccine outreach program. City of Calgary

After waiting for Calgarians to go get their vaccinations, the City of Calgary is taking vaccines to citizens.

A new mobile vaccination station has been dispatched within the city and will soon be joined by four more. The fleet will include one motorcoach and four vans.

“We know that every vaccinated individual creates a positive ripple effect of protection for themselves and for the community,” Calgary Emergency Management Agency Chief Sue Henry said Wednesday.

“CEMA will continue to work with our partners in the city and out in the community to ensure that vehicles are deployed to areas where they will have the greatest impact.”

The first van was at Olympic Plaza on Tuesday and near the Peace Bridge on Wednesday.

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Mobile vaccination sites will pop up at the Peace Bridge and Dalhousie farmer’s market on Thursday.

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“Once fully up and running, these clinics will be available for eight hours a day, running every day of the week for 30 days,” the CEMA chief said. “If the demand remains, we do have the option to extend another 30 days.”

Calgarians looking for help getting their shots will have another resource: 311. People, businesses or organizations looking for help overcoming barriers to vaccination will be connected to resources via a 311 operator.

“This includes individuals that may be facing a barrier or an organization that would like to have a vaccine bus attend an event,” Henry said.

The city’s mobile vaccine strategy is done in partnership with Alberta Health, Alberta Health Services, the Industry for Vaccination Coalition, ACESO medical services and Traxx Coachlines.

“Vaccines are truly the light at the end of the tunnel, but we still have a ways to go before we get there,” Henry said. “So we will continue to do everything we can to make sure every Calgarian has a barrier-free, simple access to vaccinations.”

The mayor also put out a call for vaccinated Calgarians to reach out and encourage those unvaccinated friends and family to get their shot.

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“We know very well that the single most important thing in helping people make the right medical decisions: his personal experience and one-on-one conversations,” Naheed Nenshi said.

“We need to make this a community-wide process to get those numbers up and to work together, one on one.”

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