Now vaccinating Group 3

An 0800 appointment line and centrally located vaccination rooms are making it easier for the next group of people to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

People who fall into Group Three for priority vaccination can now ring 0800 675 432 to book their vaccination appointments. You can also book an appointment by emailing covidvaccinations@tdh.org.nz

Hauora Tairawhiti vaccination programme manager Lissette Hayes says everyone in New Zealand aged 16 and over is in one of four groups to receive their COVID-19 vaccinations.

Group Three includes people who are over-65, have an underlying health condition, are pregnant, disabled, or are caring for someone who is disabled.

“If you fall into one of these categories, then you are considered to be in Group Three, and it’s your turn to get vaccinated,” says Ms Hayes.

Ms Hayes says while most people will arrange their own vaccine appointments through the 0800 number or email booking system, Hauora Tairawhiti is working with general practices and iwi health providers to identify others who fall into Group Three who might find it harder to arrange vaccination.

“If you fall into Group Three then please be proactive and phone 0800 675 432  to make an appointment. If you call out of hours please leave a message and out team will get back to you. If your health care provider is helping you with the appointment then I encourage you to follow their instructions so you can be vaccinated as soon as possible.”

People need two doses of the Pfizer vaccine, around three weeks apart, in order to be protected from COVID-19.

Most people in Group Three are being vaccinated in the newly opened vaccination rooms at 295 Palmerston Road (opposite EIT Tairāwhiti).

A team of 30 nurses and other staff drawn from Hauora Tairāwhiti, Turanga Health and Ngāti Porou Hauora are working week day shifts at the centre.

Ms Hayes reminds the public that the Palmerston Road vaccination centre is not for walk-ins. People coming down must have an appointment.

Ms Hayes says street and offroad parking is available. “Vaccination staff are friendly and the rooms are warm. Once at the centre you’ll be invited to enjoy a warm or cold drink, and to have something to eat before or after your vaccination.”

She says the nurses expect to start seeing greater numbers at the vaccination centre now the vaccine is available to more people and the groups being vaccinated have overlapped. While vaccine stocks are being carefully managed by the Ministry of Health over the next few weeks the local approach to vaccine distribution means rollout has been unaffected. 

Māori health organisation Turanga Health continues to help its 3500 enrolled whānau to access the vaccine by hosting day and evening clinics around the rohe. Vaccinating staff say their kaumātua are enjoying the manaakitanga (hospitality and kindness) offered as they move through the registration process, to vaccination and recovery.

 

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