Manitoba lowers the COVID-19 vaccine age eligibility again
WINNIPEG -- One day after lowering the age eligibility for the COVID-19 vaccine in Manitoba, the province has once again opened up eligibility to allow more Manitobans to book appointments at supersites and pop-up clinics.
On Tuesday afternoon, the eligible age to book a vaccine appointment for Manitobans was lowered to 52 years old and older, and 32 years old and older for First Nations individuals.
On Monday, the eligibility was set at 54 years and older, and 34 years and older for First Nations. The province also authorized the use of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for people 40 years old and older.
As of April 19, Manitoba has administered 350,977 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. Of those doses, 280,980 are first doses, and 69,997 are second doses.
The province says 26.1 per cent of Manitobans 18 and older have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
Appointments can be booked by calling 1-844-626-8222 or online.
URBAN INDIGENOUS CLINICS ANNOUNCED
Five new Indigenous-led COVID-19 immunization clinics will be opening starting next week and in May, Health Minister Heather Stefanson announced Tuesday.
The sites are meant to help increase access to immunization for Indigenous people.
“These new immunization sites are an important option for people who would otherwise face barriers in accessing immunization, recognizing that Indigenous people have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19,” said Stefanson. “These locations have been developed with the guidance and expertise of our community partners, and we are grateful for their support. By working together, we can help protect each other from this virus.”
The five sites are located here:
- Ma-Mow-We-Tak Friendship Centre in Thompson , 4 Nelson Rd., Thompson;
- Brandon Friendship Centre, 205 College Avenue, Brandon;
- Prairie Fusion Arts and Entertainment Centre, led by the Portage la Prairie Community, Revitalization Corporation, 11 Second Street NE, Portage la Prairie;
- Aboriginal Health and Wellness Centre, 180 Higgins Avenue, Winnipeg; and
- Ma Mawi Wi Chi Itata Centre – Win Gardner Place, 363 MacGregor Avenue, Winnipeg.
The province said most of the clinics are expected to open the week of April 26, with the Portage la Prairie and Thompson clinics expected to open during the week of May 3.
To help reduce barriers, about 20 per cent of all immunizations at the five clinics will be done on a walk-in basis, with the remainder being scheduled appointments, according to a release from the province.
An Elder or traditional Knowledge Keeper will be at the sites regularly, and the province said traditional ceremony, smudging and traditional medicines may also be offered at the clinics.
The province added the Aboriginal Health and Wellness Centre in Winnipeg, along with the sites in Brandon, Portage la Prairie and Thompson, will also be used to help immunize people who are homeless or precariously housed.
“These sites are known and trusted by people experiencing homelessness, and will work closely with the community shelters to support access,” a news release from the province reads. “At these sites, individuals will also receive a comfort kit that includes food and over-the-counter pain medication.”