Toronto announces 8 more mass vaccination sites as city sees 440 new COVID-19 cases

·2 min read

Toronto has announced eight new mass COVID-19 vaccination sites that officials hope to have up and running by early April, pending provincial approval and vaccine availability.

The new clinics are in addition to the previously-announced site at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre site, which vaccinated some 378 healthcare workers before being abruptly shut after just two days because of vaccine shortages.

Together, the sites will be capable of administering approximately 120,000 doses each week, subject to vaccine supply, Mayor John Tory said at a news conference Wednesday.

The city-run sites will operate alongside hospital-run ones. Eventually pharmacies and family doctors will be also be able to offer the vaccine with most residents likely receiving their doses there.

Tory also announced a targeted immunization plan to help address vaccine hesitancy in Black communities, for example. Officials are also working with South Asian and Indigenous communities to determine the best approaches for vaccinating these populations.

The targeted plan will also see mobile clinics for some of the most vulnerable, including homeless populations.

The new clinics will be held at the following locations:

  • Toronto Congress Centre

  • Malvern Community Centre

  • The Hangar at Downsview Park

  • Scarborough Town Centre

  • Cloverdale Mall

  • Mitchell Field Community Centre

  • North Toronto Memorial Community Centre

  • Carmine Stefano Community Centre

Details of the new, planned vaccination sites come as Toronto reports 440 new cases of COVID-19 along with 16 new deaths. The city's medical officer of health, Dr. Eileen de Villa, announced 426 people are in hospital with the virus.

The city has also confirmed 32 cases of the B.1.1.7 variant, first identified in the UK.

"Getting vaccinated is the right thing to do," Tory said at Wednesday's news conference.

De Villa echoed that statement.

"Living with COVID-19 right now is like trying to find our way out of a maze," she said, adding vaccines are part of the pathway out of that.