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Manitoba Able to Administer COVID-19 Vaccine to 900 More Health-Care Workers

December 18, 2020 10:14 AM | News

Dr. Brian Penner

Dr. Brian Penner, internal medicine, Health Sciences Centre, receives the first COVID-19 inoculation in Manitoba from LoriAnn Laramee, public health nurse, in the COVID-19 vaccination clinic at the Health Sciences Centre in Winnipeg, Wednesday, December 16, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods)

WINNIPEG — An additional 900 priority health-care workers can now make appointments to receive the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

Premier Brian Pallister announced on Friday the province will receive a second shipment of the vaccine next week.

“This was a monumental week in Manitoba as the first few hundred doses of the COVID-19 vaccine were administered to the first priority group of health-care providers, bringing long-awaited hope to many Manitobans and protection for the health-care system,” said Pallister.

“By end of day today, we will have immunized 900 health-care workers on the front line of this pandemic, and as we secure more vaccine supply, we’re able to open up 900 more opportunities for immunization to protect our health-care workers and the Manitobans they care for.”

The immunization clinic at the University of Manitoba Rady Faculty of Health Sciences campus opened on Wednesday for its initial three-day run, and it is now booking a second wave of appointments December 21 to 23. Clinic hours will be 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.

A dedicated phone line has been implemented to handle bookings for eligible health-care workers to receive the vaccine. After the number was leaked to the public last weekend, more than 100,000 calls were placed, many from ineligible Manitobans, wanting to book an immunization appointment.

The province has since added a number of improvements to streamline access for eligible health-care workers. These include improved initial screening questions as well as the addition of phone operators to help ensure bookings are made as quickly and effectively as possible.