Here's a look inside Windsor's new COVID-19 vaccination clinic

·2 min read
The WFCU Centre is one of two sites seniors over 80 can get a COVID-19 vaccine in Windsor-Essex. The second site, at Nature Fresh Farms Recreation Centre in Leamington, is set to open on Monday. (Katerina Georgieva/CBC - image credit)
The WFCU Centre is one of two sites seniors over 80 can get a COVID-19 vaccine in Windsor-Essex. The second site, at Nature Fresh Farms Recreation Centre in Leamington, is set to open on Monday. (Katerina Georgieva/CBC - image credit)

The new targeted COVID-19 vaccine clinic at the WFCU Centre in east Windsor opened its doors on Monday, and media outlets got a peek at the facilities on a tour Wednesday morning.

Seniors who are 80 and older are eligible to receive the vaccine at the clinic.

"The set up is great, it's very well laid out and we hope that the signage and everything will help our seniors navigate the facility in a safe manner," said Dr. Wajid Ahmed, medical officer of health for Windsor and Essex County.

In an interview with CBC Radio's Windsor Morning on Tuesday, Windsor-Essex County Health Unit CEO and chief nursing officer Theresa Marentette said that those receiving the vaccines are allowed to bring a caregiver.

She explained that when people arrive for their scheduled appointments, they are screened for COVID-19 through a questionnaire, then they go through front doors while wearing mask, use hand sanitizer and register.

They then move onto the floor of the centre. When they're with the nurse, they get asked a few questions, receive their shot and are then directed to a waiting area for 15 minutes or more before being released. Updates are sent live to the COVAX vaccine tracking system.

The health unit said 144 people who are 80-plus were vaccinated on opening day on Monday.

The clinic is vaccinating six people every 15 minutes but starting Thursday, that will ramp that up to nine people. The health unit says at this time, supply is the biggest issue. About 1,000 vaccines will be distributed per week.

Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens said the city and the health unit will be ready when more vaccine supply arrives.

"Although we're delivering and vaccinating 150 people a day today, it's just a matter of weeks before thousands of doses arrive and we have to be prepared to really ramp this facility up," he said.

The health unit has urged patience, saying it will take time to get to everyone who wants a shot. Appointments are being assigned randomly rather than first-come first-serve.

About 11,800 people have pre-registered to be vaccinated since appointment applications opened up last Thursday.

Lila Cox, 90, with her son, Larry Cox. Lila received her first dose of the vaccine on Wednesday, March 3, at the WFCU Centre clinic.
Lila Cox, 90, with her son, Larry Cox. Lila received her first dose of the vaccine on Wednesday, March 3, at the WFCU Centre clinic. (Tahmina Aziz/CBC)

Lila Cox, 90, received her first dose of the vaccine at the clinic on Wednesday.

"It was easy," she said. "No problem at all."

Her son, Larry Cox, who accompanied her, said it was a relief that she received the shot.