Saturday, December 4

Race to get Auckland 90 percent vaccinated by October 4

The race has begun to vaccinate 90 percent of eligible Auckland residents in less than two weeks.

However, vaccination buses are ready to leave the Auckland Airport vaccination unit.

Auckland is already 80 percent vaccinated.
Photo: RNZ / Nick Monro

The government has said it wants the city to reach that milestone by the time it makes its alert level decision on October 4.

The city is already at 80 percent, but those on the ground say the next 10 percent will be more challenging and will require a bit of creative thinking.

Bader Drive Doctors was the last group given two mobile buses to use for the ground deployment.

The clinic’s GP and manager, Siro Fuata’i, said they would start tomorrow with a three-day pop-up in downtown Māngere, with more planned.

The focus was on getting the Pacific community, which was behind the rest of the population, to reach 90 percent.

“I am very hopeful, I am optimistic that we can get there, but it will be a real challenge for us,” said Fuata’i.

Approximately 10,000 Auckland residents per day would need their first dose.

The latest figures, from Tuesday, showed that 21,000 people received an injection, but some were second doses.

The director of the Immunization Counseling Center, Nikki Turner, said the goal was a difficult task, but the fact that the city has reached 80 percent in recent weeks shows that people are motivated.

The director of the Immunization Advisory Center (IMAC), Nikki Turner, receives her COVID-19 vaccine

The director of the Immunization Counseling Center, Nikki Turner.
Photo: RNZ / Samuel Rillstone

Vaccination rates in Auckland have been declining since a major explosion at the beginning of the outbreak.

Turner said it was a known phenomenon that the speed of a throw tended to decrease after about 70 percent and that it was important that there were many different ways for people to access a vaccine.

“The more coverage you get, the more effort you have to put into reaching more and more people,” he said.

GP Rawiri Jansen, who helps run a large vaccination center, said creativity and new ideas were crucial in this finale of the launch.

Most of the vaccination buses had been parked so far, but he was eager to see some of them moving.

“A pickup comes out on a suburban street and unpacks a gazebo, some plastic chairs, some siren kings music across the street. It makes people just get out of their houses and pay attention – ‘that It’s interesting and, look, there are vaccines on my street, ”Jansen said.

Its network of GP clinics was focusing on reaching out to Maori patients to come forward, with rates still far behind the rest of the population.

A call from a trusted doctor would work well for some people, and many different methods would be needed, he said.

Pacific rates are still below the rest of the population, but they were improving.

Fuata’i said that the large group of the Assembly of God was having an impact, and that people saw the virus attack very close to home.

His team was planning more pop-ups and was trying to work with companies with large Pacific populations.

Others were planning neighborhood leaflets and visits to construction sites.

KFC said it had offered its sites to the government if they wanted to use them.

Auckland’s head of the vaccination program, Anthony Jordan, said that although it was the final part of the race, it might seem like the longest part.

When people saw their friends and families get vaccinated, it helped build momentum and hoped it would inspire those they had previously been waiting for.

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