The COVID-19 vaccine is now being administered to frontline healthcare workers across Nova Scotia.
The Northern Zone was the final area to establish a vaccination clinic today at the Colchester-East Hants Health Centre.
Public health is reporting four new COVID-19 cases today. One is close contact of a previously reported case in the Northern Zone. The other three are in the central zone and are related to travel outside Nova Scotia.
The province is also expanding the program to immunize residents of long term care facilities by adding two more homes in Sydney.
The expansion comes as the federal government announced provinces will be getting much less Pfizer vaccine than they had previously been told because of the manufacturer’s plan to revamp one of their production facilities.
Dr. Robert Strang, chief medical officer of health for Nova Scotia, says the province was set to receive 13,500 doses this month and is still waiting to hear from Ottawa how much of that we will actually receive.
Strang called it short-term pain for long-term gain.
“And we continue to be told that any reduction we’re getting for February will be added to the supply we can expect in March,” he said.
Strang says their vaccine rollout plan is flexible to allow for increases or decreases in supply.
Since the first vaccines arrived Dec. 15, 8,520 doses have been administered and 2,215 of those have received their second doses to complete their immunization.
Another 5,850 doses arrived in Nova Scotia this week bringing the total number of doses received to 28,850.
The Nova Scotia College of Nursing recently announced retired nurses will receive a conditional license, at no cost, as a measure to increase the number of people available to administer the vaccine injections.
Strang is pleased to see the number of people stepping up to help get the vaccine into Nova Scotians arms.
Based on the number of people who volunteered to assist with pop-up COVID-19 testing clinics, the province is offering people the opportunity to again help out with the upcoming vaccination clinics.
“There was significant buy-in from communities putting their hand up and saying we want to come and help out in some way,” said Strang. “I really think that many Nova Scotians would be more than willing to come forward and say I’m prepared to volunteer my time to help support and run a COVID immunization clinic in my community; knowing, by doing that, they are contributing to their collective safety in that community.
A link to the volunteer page is on the QCCR website.
Reported by Ed Halverson
To listen to the broadcast of this story, press play below.