Point Edward, ON – The Lambton COVID-19 Immunization Task Force met Tuesday, April 13 to discuss updates to the COVID-19 vaccine rollout plan in Lambton County. Here are some highlights from the meeting:
A total of 35,443 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered. That represents 31 percent of the eligible population in Lambton County who have received one or more doses.
Last week, Lambton County entered Phase 2 of the Provincial Immunization plan. Adults 60 years of age and older, essential caregivers of adults receiving chronic home care, and the first group of essential workers who cannot work from home (according to the Ontario Government’s Phase 2 prioritization) are currently being immunized. This is a large cohort of people which will take a few weeks to complete.
Vaccine supply continues to be a critical barrier to full implementation of the COVID-19 Immunization Rollout for the region. As such, Lambton Public Health (LPH) has postponed two immunization clinics this week in Forest and Brooke-Alvinston. Those clinics have been re-scheduled for Friday, April 16 in Forest and Friday, April 23 in Brooke-Alvinston. Individuals who had vaccine bookings scheduled for either clinic are asked to arrive at the same time as their original appointment (on the re-scheduled date). If you can no longer attend due to the change in schedule, please call Lambton Public Health to re-book at 519-383-8331, Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. You can also contact LPH via the web form on its website.
Lambton County’s current capacity to deliver vaccines through all channels including fixed site and mobile clinics stands at around 12,000 to 15,000 doses per week. Current weekly vaccine supplies have averaged around 5,000 doses per week. This means local clinics will not be running at full capacity unless vaccine supply increases significantly.
A pop-up community clinic was held at Sunbridge Hotel on April 8 for those living in shelter programs. A total of 120 people were immunized at this clinic, which equals over 40 percent of those living in shelter type facilities. Future clinics for additional local congregate settings like group homes and other shelters are being scheduled (based on future vaccine allocations).
LPH recently implemented a pilot project with four local primary care practices to increase their capacity to deliver COVID vaccines. Over 2,000 doses have been administered through partnerships with Central Lambton Family Health Team, North Lambton Community Health Centre, Rapids Family Health Team, and Twin Bridges Nurse Practitioner Clinic. These doses were offered to patients with the highest risk medical conditions as per the Province’s Phase 2 vaccination prioritization. This successful partnership has demonstrated that primary care providers are an important vaccine delivery channel, and these practice groups are well positioned to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine as it becomes available. To date, 500 doses of AstraZeneca have been received for distribution to primary care.
Five local pharmacies are also offering the AstraZeneca vaccine to members of the public 55 years of age and older. Additional pharmacies will be brought online as vaccine supply increases. For a list of the local pharmacies offering this service go to the vaccine locations page on the Ontario Government website.
Reminder: Based on a decision by the Provincial Government in March, COVID-19 vaccination intervals have been extended from four weeks to 16 weeks. This means if your second dose appointment was scheduled four weeks after your first dose (or if you didn’t receive an additional appointment), your second dose booking needs to be re-scheduled. The new appointment will be 16 weeks after your first dose. LPH has reached out via email and phone to the majority of residents who needed to have their second dose appointments re-scheduled. They’ve also communicated this messaging extensively to local residents through a variety of channels, but unfortunately some individuals did not receive the message and attended clinics this weekend that were closed. LPH apologizes for any inconvenience, and will contact you directly with a new appointment booking option. Please do not call or request your second dose appointment at this time.
Over the weekend, Lambton Public Health released a new patron walk through video to showcase its fixed site clinic in Point Edward. The intention is that this video will help individuals prepare for appointments in a larger high volume immunization clinic setting (which is quite different than what they have experienced at past influenza type clinics). The new video can be viewed on getthevaccine.ca.
Visit GetTheVaccine.ca for the latest updates on the vaccine roll-out plan in Lambton County.
The Lambton COVID-19 Immunization Task Force is a group dedicated to the safe, comprehensive, effective, efficient and equitable rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine in Lambton County. Led by Lambton Public Health, the group consists of key stakeholders critical to the success of the plan including: Bluewater Health, Emergency Medical Services, Primary Care, Community Emergency Management Coordinators from the City of Sarnia, Village of Point Edward and County of Lambton, Aamjiwnaang First Nation, Kettle and Stony Point First Nation, and Walpole Island First Nation. The Task Force works to make vaccinations available to eligible populations in alignment with the Province of Ontario’s COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Plan.