A change in venue could see more COVID-19 vaccination appointments available to South Peace residents.
People getting their corona virus shots will now have to get them done at a large-scale vaccination site in Grande Prairie.
Starting April 5 those getting their immunization shots will no longer be going to the Grande Prairie Public Health Unit but will head to a location across the road at the Teresa Sargent Hall in the Montrose Cultural Centre.
“This collaboration with the City of Grande Prairie creates a unique opportunity for AHS to deliver COVID-19 vaccination on a larger scale in northern communities,” Alberta Minister of Health Tyler Shandro said in a release. “We are grateful for their participation and support in making this opportunity a reality,”
“The new site is a step in the right direction,” Grande Prairie Mayor Jackie Clayton added, “I know Grande Prairie and area residents will be pleased to be able to get the vaccine quicker and closer to home.”
With its proximity to parking, transit, and Grande Prairie’s downtown, the location of Teresa Sargent should provide a good locale for the clinic. There will be free parking in the large lot south of the Montrose Cultural Centre for those getting vaccinated.
The only walk-in entry to the clinic will be via the southside doors near the parking lot. There will be two drop-off points for those with mobility concerns. The first drop-off point will be at the north entry into the building and the second on the west side of the Mamwe Concourse, across from the RCMP detachment.
Once it is 100 per cent functional, the new immunization site will host 60 stations, seeing 900 Albertans vaccinated each day. Those coming to receive shots will still require an appointment.
If additional doses of vaccine are available, the site can potentially handle 1,380 daily appointments by extending the operating hours.
Those who had appointments previously booked at the health unit should receive a text message notifying them to attend the Montrose Cultural Centre instead.
Drop-in appointments are not available at the new site, and there will be protocols in place to ensure social distancing, and cleaning and sanitizing of stations between bookings.
Alberta Health Services staff will also be on hand to screen everyone coming into the facility.
Those who feel unwell or have any of the virus symptoms should reschedule their appointment when they are feeling better.