Canada’s biggest city opens its first COVID-19 mass vaccination site

COVID-19 mass vaccination site
Dr. Eileen de Villa, Premier Doug Ford and Mayor John Tory visit the new COVID-19 mass vaccination site at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre in Toronto, Ontario. Photo by Frank Gunn of the Canadian Press.

If everything goes according to plan, the Ontario Government is planning to have everyone in the province vaccinated by late June or early August. The first COVID-19 mass vaccination site will open in downtown Toronto, Ontario.

Rick Hillier, the retired general in charge of the province’s vaccine rollout spoke with the CBC, saying that meeting the goals will depend on establishing a steady vaccine supply.

“I’d love to see the province of Ontario done by the end of July or early August with all those who want to have a vaccine and who are eligible to receive it. But until we get the vaccine allocation, until we know what’s coming, we just can’t do it,” Hillier told the CBC.

While the Ontario Government has distributed the more COVID-19 vaccines than any other provincial or territorial government in Canada, it has only administered only 72% of the doses it has received from the federal Government of Canada.

Ontario has already administered over 200,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to priority groups across the province.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford and Toronto Mayor John Tory have toured the first mass vaccination site in Canada, located at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

The Toronto site will serve as the blueprint for how other cities across Canada will distribute the COVID-19 vaccines to the general public.

The Toronto site will open on Monday, January 18, 2021. At least 250 doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is expected to be administered per day.

The six week pilot project will be the first vaccination clinic in a community setting, giving a glimpse of how the general public might receive the vaccine.

Staff from shelters, harm reduction sites and other community agencies will be required to sign up online to book a schedule to receive the COVID-19 shot at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

The mass vaccination site can be scaled up, as the province receives more vaccines from the federal government.

During the tour, Ford and Tory issued statements but did not take questions from reporters present.

“Vaccination is soon to come and we’re just working away at being ready to do that,” Tory said.

“Our goal is to get as many needles in people’s arms as possible,” Ford said.

The Ontario Government’s COVID-19 task force is looking at 50 different sites for mass vaccination around the province.

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