B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry update COVID-19 cases, B.C. legislature, June 29, 2020. (B.C. government)

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry update COVID-19 cases, B.C. legislature, June 29, 2020. (B.C. government)

VIDEO: B.C. pop-up vaccine clinics not successful, health officials admit

Apologies were offered for the anger and confusion caused by the program, which resulted in lineups where many waited for hours and still didn’t get vaccinated

Pop-up vaccine clinics in Metro Vancouver COVID-19 hot zones are an experiment that didn’t work, British Columbia health officials said Thursday.

Apologies were offered for the anger and confusion caused by the program, which was meant to reach as many residents as quickly as possible but resulted in lineups where many waited for hours and still didn’t get vaccinated.

“Yes, there were some operational things that were done or not done that caused a lot of frustration and I can see that, and I absolutely apologize to people for the miscommunications and for the confusion,” provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry told a news conference.

She said attempts to reach people in areas of high COVID-19 counts using drop-in-type clinics in Surrey and Coquitlam faced challenges as people lined up for hours waiting for vaccines.

“It got a life of its own that was not anticipated, in social media in particular,” said Henry. “That was certainly not the intent.”

Dr. Victoria Lee, the president of Fraser Health, said no more pop-up clinics are planned as the health authority learned from the experience where people who were eligible and ineligible for immunization waited in long lineups for limited amounts of vaccine.

Health Minister Adrian Dix faced pointed questions in the legislature about the massive confusion over the pop-up clinics.

“The premier’s pop-up clinics are somewhat out of ‘Hunger Games,’” said Liberal health critic Renee Merrifield. “The confusion, anger and the lineups continue today in Surrey.”

Dix said the rollout of the clinics did not work.

“I think it’s fair to say they were not a success, certainly from communications or a confidence perspective,” he said. “Fraser Health is taking lessons from that.”

Despite the problems at the pop-up clinics, thousands of people still got first doses of a vaccine, said Henry, adding officials must now regroup and find other ways to distribute vaccines to those living in high-case areas.

“Hopefully we’ve made the point today that the best way to guarantee your spot and your vaccine is to register and it will be there for you, so you don’t have to worry whether there’s a pop-up clinic in your community or not,” she said.

B.C. is expecting to receive more than one million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine in the next month and the first shipments of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine are expected next week, said Henry.

It’s expected that every adult in B.C. will have received their first vaccine dose by mid-June, she said.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Coronavirus

Just Posted

The first Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine dose in Canada is prepared at The Michener Institute in Toronto on Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
One death, 39 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

There are 484 active cases of the virus in the region currently

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
65 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

Overall, B.C. is seeing a decrease in COVID-19 cases

FILE - In this April 19, 2021, file photo, Keidy Ventura, 17, receives her first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in West New York, N.J. States across the country are dramatically scaling back their COVID-19 vaccine orders as interest in the shots wanes, putting the goal of herd immunity further out of reach. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)
5 more deaths, 131 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health over the weekend

Those 18-years and older in high-transmission neighbourhoods can register for the vaccine

A medical worker prepares vials of the COVID-19 vaccines, Chinese Sinopharm, left, Sputnik V, center, and Pfizer at a vaccine centre, in the Usce shopping mall in Belgrade, Serbia, Thursday, May 6, 2021. Serbian authorities are looking for incentives for people to boost vaccination that has slowed down in recent weeks amid widespread anti-vaccination and conspiracy theories in the Balkan nation. The government has also promised a payment of around 25 euros to everyone who gets vaccinated by the end of May. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
38 new COVID-19 cases, more than 335k vaccines administered in Interior Health

Interior Health also to start targeted vaccinations in high transmission neighbourhoods

FILE PHOTO
Second doses of COVID-19 vaccine will be available, as AstraZeneca supply runs low: Interior Health

Province expecting large volumes of Pfizer BioNTech as age-based cohort immunization program ramps up

B.C. Labour Minister Harry Bains in the B.C. legislature, May 13, 2019. (Hansard TV)
VIDEO: B.C. to provide 3 days of sick pay for COVID-19 absences

Province will support employers on cost, labour minister says

BC Housing minister David Eby. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito)
Eby jabs back against Penticton mayor’s ad urging BC Premier to intervene in shelter dispute

Eby writes that Penticton’s ‘serious’ social issues won’t improve under leadership of the mayor

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, April 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 rate creeps up again, 600 new cases Wednesday

One more death, 423 people in hospital with virus

B.C. Agriculture Minister Lana Popham takes questions in the B.C. legislature in 2017. (Hansard TV)
UPDATE: B.C. will fund another year of fresh fruit, vegetables, milk in schools

John Horgan government working on school meal program

Surrey RCMP is releasing sketches of a suspect in an “indecent act” at the Coyote Creek Elementary playground on April 30, 2021. Police said the suspect was clean-shaven “during some interactions” and on “other occasions had stubble outlining a goatee and mustache.” (Images: Surrey RCMP handout)
Vancouver mayor-elect Kennedy Stewart addresses supporters in Vancouver on Sunday, Oct. 21, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver mayor says there’s no time to redo details of drug decriminalization plan

Kennedy Stewart says a federal election could see the small window of opportunity close on the city’s bid for an exemption from criminal provisions on simple possession of small amounts of drugs

Premier Mike Horgan received his first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. (Facebook/John Horgan)
More than 50% of people eligible in B.C. have received 1st vaccine dose

‘We’ve made extraordinary progress together over the past few weeks,’ says Premier Horgan

Brad MacKenzie, advocacy chair for the ALS Society of B.C., says having research projects in the province allows people here to have access to cutting-edge treatments now being developed. (B.C. government video)
B.C. funds research chair for Lou Gehrig’s disease at UBC

Pandemic has cut off patient access to international projects

Most Read