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Numbers go down as sites go up – Wairarapa has it covered

Published Tuesday 22 Jun 2021

The COVID-19 vaccination statistics are closely watched by Kiwis across the country and, when Wairarapa DHB numbers looked bleak last week, people were quick to query the reasons why.

Oddly enough, the temporary dip in delivery is something to celebrate for the region.

The vaccination centre at the hospital site closed for three days last week, one day was to accommodate the Nurses strike, and the other two to allow the team to set up two new vaccination centres in Masterton and Featherston.

Shifting to the community settings was always an integral part of the escalation plan as the rollout moved from vaccinating Group 2 to Group 3, which is a much larger population. It improves access and makes getting to clinics much easier for people, but it did require the DHB to stop vaccinating for two days, impacting the region’s vaccination targets.

The DHB says the negative 15% variance to original target plan last week won’t be an ongoing trend, and expects the rates to climb again from this point forward as it increases vaccination dose delivery week by week.

View the national variance figures.

Wairarapa DHB opened two new community vaccination centres last week

Published Tuesday 22 Jun 2021

Making vaccinations accessible for people is key to the success of a vaccination programme of this scale. Opening two new clinics last week, in central Masterton and in Featherston, Wairarapa DHB is ‘ramping up’ its vaccination campaign.

Moving the vaccination centres out into the community is the first step in bringing more accessible vaccination to the population. Over the next six months these two primary sites will be supported by mobile clinics, designed to deliver vaccinations in different parts of Wairarapa to meet the needs of priority groups.

Previously the DHB had vaccinated Group 2, and the start of the Group 3 population from its home site at Wairarapa Hospital. Masterton Medical also assisted with vaccinations for Group 2, and mobile units were out and about throughout the region to cater for the vulnerable aged residential care community.

Wairarapa’s high demand for vaccinations “a pleasing problem to have”

Published Tuesday 22 Jun 2021

Moving on from Group 2 to Group 3 vaccinations some weeks ago, Wairarapa DHB has already started to implement its escalation strategy and the vaccination team is happy with the community response.

“Demand is high and keeping up with the volume has been a challenge, but it is a great problem to have,” Senior Responsible Officer, Sandra Williams said. “Wairarapa people have really embraced the COVID-19 vaccination programme, with many of them not wanting to wait to be invited to book.”

Waiting to be invited is an important part of the delivery strategy, allowing the DHB to balance the booking demand with the capacity to deliver vaccine doses.

“When people share their invitation information with others, thinking they are being helpful, the call centre has trouble keeping up,” Williams explained. “That is frustrating for all concerned.”

In response to the demand, the DHB is now providing an email address as an alternative to the 0800 call centre, and continuing to grow its vaccination workforce.

“Hopefully that will ease the pressure on the team and improve the customer experience until the national booking solution is provided for all New Zealanders,” Williams said.

Research shows high level of willingness for vaccine

Published Tuesday 22 Jun 2021

The latest research findings show a high level of willingness for people to get a COVID-19 vaccine, with an estimated 3.26 million people out of the estimated 4.08 million New Zealanders aged 16 and over, saying yes to getting a vaccine.

Within Māori and Pacific Island communities, the Māori potential uptake has increased to 75 percent (up from 71 percent in April) and the potential Pacific Island uptake remains steady at around 78 percent.

Around 12 percent say they’re unlikely to get vaccinated, while about eight percent of those surveyed say they’re unsure.

Read the full article.

Medsafe gives provisional approval for vaccine for 12 - 15 year olds

Published Tuesday 22 Jun 2021

Medsafe has given provisional approval of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for 12 - 15 year olds.

Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, annouced the provisional approval on Monday 21 June post-Cabinet.
Cabinet still needs to approve 'a decision to use' and until then youth aged 12 - 15 years cannot receive the Pfizer vaccine. Ministry of Health officials will give advice to the Government about the 'decision to use' the vaccine and Cabinet is expected to make a decision later this month.
The provisional approval of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for 12 - 15 year olds is a positive step in New Zealand's fight against COVID-19.

Maraeroa Marae welcomes first COVID-19 vaccinations

Published Tuesday 22 Jun 2021

Meet kuia Rangi Poutu of Ngā Hau e Whā.

She was the first person to get a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination at Porirua’s new Māori-lead clinic at Maraeroa Marae.

The clinic officially opened its doors to support whānau to get protected in Porirua East on June 16.

Rangi has been supporting the marae since moving to Porirua from Ashhurst in the 1970s.

Like many people in the community, she has supported the growth of the marae since its early days.

“It was really important that for us as Māori that we had our place to come to participate in our culture.

“The reo, kapa haka, tangi, celebrations – everything was based around the marae.”

Her strong connection to the area meant she was eager to also support its COVID-19 vaccination programme.

“I believe in the vaccine, I really do, because that’s how we’ve been brought up – we used to be visited by the doctor every month.”

Hundreds of Pacific people receive COVID-19 vaccine in Wellington

Published Wednesday 16 Jun 2021

More than 200 Pacific people have received their COVID-19 vaccinations at the Pacific Islanders’ Presbyterian Church in Newtown last week.

Part of a series of ‘festival days’ – where the Pacific community is vaccinated together in a welcoming environment – the event was the first in the region to be held in a place of worship.

Capital & Coast DHB worked with Tū Ora Compass Health PHO and the church community on the event.

“It was wonderful to see so many of our older Pacific members there, and we look forward to more events like this supporting better health outcomes for our vulnerable communities,” said Tū Ora Pacific Director of Health Henrietta Hunkin-Tagaloa.

“We had around 20 members of the Tū Ora team, all working hard to provide an innovative COVID-19 vaccination service close to home and in culturally-appropriate settings where people can feel relaxed, comfortable and supported.”

Following a prayer service, the church was transformed into a clinic – decorated with traditional fabrics, and healthy food and drink. The atmosphere was convivial, with music playing and hugs and kisses shared by members of a community coming together.

“We need to have this vaccination. Without it our health is at risk. Together with faith in God and His healing spirit, we will be well,” said Reverend Dr Feleterika Nokise in his sermon to the congregation.

Read the full article.

Catholic Church campaign targets ethnic communities in the fight against COVID-19

Published Wednesday 16 Jun 2021

A new Catholic Church campaign supporting the COVID-19 vaccine programme focusses on ethnic and religious communities that are fearful of getting vaccinated because of misinformation.

Te Kupenga - Catholic Leadership Institute Chief Executive Dr Areti Metuamate says the ‘Love your neighbour as yourself’ campaign aims to reach people in about 10 ethnic communities and allay fears they may have about the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine.

“As the vaccine is now being offered to more members of the public, including those in at risk Maori and Pasifika communities, we want to urge people to get vaccinated to protect themselves, their whanau and their community.”

To demonstrate the importance of getting the vaccine, as well as its safety, Cardinal John Dew, the Archbishop of Wellington and President of the NZ Catholic Bishops Conference, and St Anne’s Newtown Parish Priest, Father Doug Shepherd, received their first dose of the Pfizer vaccine on 9 June, alongside representatives of Maori and Pasifika communities.

“It’s important that as leaders in the church and Pasifika community we show unity and strength against this virus for our communities to follow,” Dr Metuamate says.

Aged residential care vaccinations complete in Wellington region

Published Wednesday 16 Jun 2021

More than 5000 residents and staff at 46 aged residential care facilities across Wellington, Porirua, the Hutt Valley, and Kāpiti Coast have now received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, with the last vaccinations delivered in Lower Hutt.

Hutt Valley and Capital & Coast DHBs worked closely with pharmacy vaccinators to roll out vaccinations on site to this important priority population. Pharmacists Duncan Sutherland and James Westbury led teams that delivered vaccinations to the vast majority of residents and staff.

“Partnering with Pharmacy has enabled our successful programme to work well and provide a warm and welcoming vaccination service to our older generation,” said Rachel Haggerty, Director Strategy, Planning and Performance at Hutt Valley and Capital & Coast DHBs.

“We have seen both locally and overseas the devastating effect that COVID-19 can have on aged residential care communities. With two doses of protection now across our region, residents and their whānau can rest more easily.”

Read the full article.



Be vaccination proud!

Published Wednesday 9 Jun 2021

You can get your photo taken at any of our vaccination centres, in front of our banners.

Share your photos on social media with the hashtag #VaccinateNZ

Let your friends and whānau know that getting vaccinated is the right thing to do.