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Toronto to pivot COVID-19 vaccine strategy, focus on ‘hyper-local’ approach

The City of Toronto says it is shifting its COVID-19 vaccination resources and will be focusing on a “hyper-local” and “equity-focused” approach.

In a press release Wednesday afternoon, the city said its crews along with Toronto Public Health (TPH) will be “shifting the city-wide COVID-19 vaccination approach to increase localized vaccination opportunities, outreach and efforts, as case counts and hospitalizations continue to decline.”

The release said the city and TPH will shift resources to a “hyper-local, equity-focused campaign” and “continue to increase vaccination opportunities in focused communities with low vaccine uptake.”

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“While significant progress has been made across the city and in certain age groups, disparity in vaccine uptake remains as some communities continue to experience hesitancy and barriers to vaccination,” the release reads.

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The city said TPH will be bringing mobile clinics to 30 priority neighbourhoods that were identified through an analysis of “local, neighborhood-level data.”

Mobile clinics will be brought to the following neighbourhoods:

  • Agincourt North
  • Agincourt South-Malvern West
  • Black Creek
  • Brookhaven-Amesbury
  • Dorset Park
  • Downsview-Roding-CFB
  • Eglinton East
  • Flemingdon Park
  • Glenfield-Jane Heights
  • Humbermede
  • Kennedy Park
  • Kingsview Village-The Westway
  • L’Amoreaux
  • Malvern
  • Milliken
  • Mount Dennis
  • Mount Olive-Silverstone-Jamestown
  • North St.James Town
  • Oakridge
  • Rockcliffe-Smythe
  • Scarborough Village
  • South Parkdale
  • Tam O’Shanter-Sullivan
  • Thorncliffe Park
  • West Hill
  • West Humber-Clairville
  • Westminster-Branson
  • Weston
  • Woburn
  • York University Heights

The city said the new strategy also includes the expansion of COVID-19 vaccination clinics at community centres, and “restarting mobile clinic operations as shopping malls.”

According to the release, 19 COVID-19 vaccination clinics will be held as part of the city’s Shop and Vax campaign.

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The clinics will be held from Feb. 24 to Feb. 27, the city said.

Clinics will be held at:

  • The North York Sheridan Mall at 2202 Jane St., Unit 5, next to the Walmart on Feb. 25 from 5 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. and Feb. 26 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • The Lawrence Allen Centre, 700 Lawrence Ave. W. on Feb. 26 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • The Stockyards at 980 St. Clair Ave. W. on Feb. 26 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Yonge Sheppard Centre at 2 Sheppard Ave. E. on Feb. 26 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Yorkgate Mall at 1 Yorkgate Blvd., upstairs by the Dollarama, on Feb. 26 from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.

The city said first, second, third and pediatric doses will be offered at the Shop and Vax clinics. Walk-ins will be accepted.

More information can be found on the city’s website.

What’s more, the city said on March 1, it will open a new clinic at Eglinton Court, located at 1904 Eglinton Ave. E.

“This new City-run clinic will replace clinic operations at Scarborough Town Centre, which will close on Saturday, February 26,” the release said.

According to the city, this clinic will also offer first, second, third and pediatric doses, and will accept both walk-in and pre-booked appointments.

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The clinic will be open Tuesday to Friday from 2 p.m., to 8 p.m., and on weekends from 11 a.m., to 5 p.m.

Read more:

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“The new clinic is close to several neighbourhoods where COVID-19 vaccination rates are below the city-wide average, including Wexford/Maryvale, Flemingdon Park, O’Connor Parkview, Taylor-Massey, Pleasant View and Parkwoods-Donlands,” the release said.

According to the city, TPH will also be adjusting the hours of city-run clinics from seven to six days a week “as resources are shifted to support hyper-local efforts.”

The city said the clinics at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, the Woodbine Mall and Mitchell Field Community Centre will be open Tuesdays to Fridays from 2 p.m., to 8 p.m., and on weekends from 11 a.m., to 5 p.m.

Similarly, the clinics at Cloverdale Mall and Scarborough Town Centre will be open from Monday to Friday from 2 p.m., to 8 p.m., and on weekends from 11 a.m., to 5 p.m.

As of Feb. 17, the city said 91.1 per cent of eligible Toronto residents 12 and up had received at least one COVID-19 vaccine.

The city said more than 88.3 per cent had received two doses, and more than 63 per cent had received three doses.

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In a statement, Toronto Mayor John Tory said he continues to “urge residents to get vaccinated and to get their third dose as soon as they are eligible.”

“A third dose will help make sure you have the best protection possible against COVID-19 and the Omicron variant,” Tory said. “It is worth taking the time to get and that’s why we are making it as easy as possible to get your third dose at our Shop and Vax clinics this weekend.”

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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