Ontario rolls out vaccine clinic on wheels

Anyone not vaccinated should hop on the GO-VAXX bus!

The Ontario government is partnering with Metrolinx to offer a new, convenient option for people to receive their COVID-19 vaccine.

Two GO buses have been temporarily retrofitted to serve as mobile vaccine clinics as part of the province’s last mile strategy to target those who have yet to receive a first or second dose.

The first GO-VAXX bus hit the road in early August, with its first stop at Canada’s Wonderland on August 7 and August 8 for guests with reservations to the park, as well as Canada’s Wonderland staff.

“This innovative partnership with Metrolinx will ensure Ontarians have even easier access to a first or second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine,” Solicitor General Sylvia Jones said. “By bringing vaccines directly to the people, we are helping more residents get the protection they need for themselves, their families and their communities.”

The GO-VAXX buses will travel to malls, festivals, community hubs and events throughout the summer and fall across the Greater Golden Horseshoe Region. No appointments are needed, and anyone aged 12 and over can get their first or second dose while supplies last. The mobile clinics are fully accessible and will be administering the Pfizer vaccine.

Each bus is expected to be on the road six days a week. The province will work with local public health units and municipalities to determine specific sites based on local data and needs. The weekly GO-VAXX schedule can be found at www.ontario.ca/vaccinebus and will be updated weekly.

As the province’s vaccine rollout progresses, targeted strategies such as the GO-VAXX bus will play a vital role in reaching communities with lower vaccination rates.

The province is working with public health units to make it easier and more convenient for individuals to get vaccinated through multiple targeted strategies, including mobile clinics and community-based pop-ups, dedicated clinic days for families with people with disabilities, townhall meetings in multiple languages, and services such as transportation, translation services and drive-through clinics.

“With over nine million Ontarians now fully vaccinated, we are seeing the benefits of the strong protection provided by the COVID-19 vaccines,” Health Minister Christine Elliott said. “The job is not over yet, and the GO-VAXX bus is another way our government is making it easier and convenient for more Ontarians to receive their vaccine.”

“We are excited and pleased to help plan and deliver this innovative approach linking vaccination and transit together,” said Phil Verster, President and CEO, Metrolinx. “Our bus drivers jumped at the opportunity to be part of this incredible initiative and will be operating the GO-VAXX bus.

“Metrolinx has supported on site clinics for our staff and the public, and the GO-VAXX bus is another great next step to make it even more convenient for people to get protected.”

Anyone wishing to take advantage of the GO-VAXX bus to receive their vaccine is reminded to bring your health card. If you do not have a health card or your health card is expired, bring another form of government-issued photo identification such as a driver’s license, passport, Status card, or birth certificate.

Each bus operates as a fully functioning vaccine clinic with the necessary supplies and trained staff to provide assistance to people and ensure vaccines are administered safely. All COVID-19 safety precautions will be followed on board, including the required pre-vaccination screening and post-vaccination monitoring.

GO-VAXX is a walk-in clinic and does not offer appointments.

Individuals can call the Provincial Vaccine Booking Line number at 1-833-943-3900 for information about booking an appointment. For general inquiries, individuals can call the Provincial Vaccine Information Line number at 1-888-999-6488.

Appointments can also be scheduled directly through public health units that use their own booking system, and through participating pharmacies.

 

Photo: Two GO buses have been temporarily retrofitted to serve as mobile vaccine clinics as part of the province’s last mile strategy to target those who have yet to receive a first or second dose. (Metrolinx twitter photo)

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