Hockey arena, shopping mall prepped for vaccinations in Montreal's west end

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The health authority responsible for Montreal's west end is preparing turn a hockey arena, a shopping mall and an office building into mass vaccination centres. But when exactly residents will be able to get shots still isn't clear.

In a statement, the CIUSSS West-Central Montreal said work is underway to convert the following locations:

  • Décarie Square shopping centre (6900 Décarie Blvd.).

  • An office building (7101 Parc Ave.).

  • Bill-Durnan Arena (4988 Vézina St.).

People will soon be able to make appointments online, through the Clic Santé platform, or by telephone. Appointments will be mandatory in order to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

The health authority didn't provide an estimated start date, given the uncertainty around the rollout of the vaccine in Quebec and across Canada.

"At this stage, due to the limited supply of vaccines, the opening is still a few weeks away. It is premature to set a date," spokesperson Barry Morgan said in an email.

Once open, the sites are expected to operate seven days a week, from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

The vaccinations will be made available in order of priority, starting with those age 80 and older.

"I encourage everyone to get vaccinated as soon as they are eligible," said Dr. Lawrence Rosenberg, the CIUSSS's president and CEO.

Roughly 250,000 people have received a dose of vaccine in Quebec (primarily health-care workers and people living in long-term care homes), accounting for three per cent of the population.