Vaccination centers have expanded again in Auckland today, amid second-dose stocks from the country’s first mass vaccination event.
About 15,500 people who received their first Pfizer vaccine at the Vodafone Event Center in Manukau in late July should now receive another vaccine, but vaccination centers say they have plenty of room for more.
People who book their second dose have been invited to choose between the Trusts Arena parking lot in Henderson and the Airport Park n Fly in Māngere, and show up today, tomorrow or Sunday, at the same time as their first appointment.
North Region Health Coordination Center vaccination program leader Matt Hannant said both sites have been operating as vaccination sites since last month, and staff were equipped for the increase.
“We have more people working in the cold chain, more vaccinators and more people who greet people and take care of them when they drive through the center,” he said.
While some people at the Manukau event had already booked their second dose elsewhere, Hannant expected about 9,000 people to accept the offer.
At 1 p.m. today, he said that 670 people had been vaccinated in the sand and that more than 1800 people had turned out to Airport Park & Fly, where there was plenty of room for more people to show up for the first or second second dose, he said. said.
“Actually, we thought we could probably do more through that site. The site is set to do over 4,000. So I think a key message from us is that if you haven’t received your first dose, skip to drive through. We would be very happy to see you there, “he said.
“The team is doing well and we are communicating with people in a friendly and fast way.”
At the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga in Favona, a three-day mass vaccination event serving Auckland’s Tongan community is also in its second day.
The goal was to vaccinate up to 600 people a day, but that goal has been broken, according to the president of the Pacific Response Coordination Team, Pakilau Manase Lua.
Yesterday, 811 people showed up and 500 were vaccinated in just the first three hours of today.
“There have been stable vehicles that go by all the time. So everything is going very, very well. You can just show up, you don’t need to book at all. We’re just trying to make it as simple and easy as possible for our community,” he said.
Meanwhile, the country’s vaccine stocks are being recharged with 250,000 doses from Spain now on the ground in Auckland.
The Health Ministry said they would be quality checked at the National Vaccine Center in Auckland and then distributed across the country.
Some first-line vaccinators wanted all those extra doses to go to Aucklanders, but Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson said it wasn’t necessary.
“Right now, today it’s not about there being any problem if people in Auckland want to get vaccinated. This weekend there will be huge opportunities for people to go out and get vaccinated. There are places available for people to get vaccinated,” he said .
“This is not a shortage in Auckland. We now have vaccines on hand to keep that momentum going and that’s what we plan to do.”
The Health Ministry expects to obtain additional doses from a second country and expects to announce the details in the next week.