Quebec’s strategy to get more of the 540,000 unvaccinated people in the province to get their first dose will begin with the implementation of new drop-in clinics this week in Montreal, before branching out to targeted areas across the province.
“There are many factors that go into the decision not to get the vaccine” said Lionel Carment, Quebec’s junior Health Minister, pointing out that that number includes people with varied vulnerabilities, people from marginalized communities, and others who might be hesitant or worried for other reasons. “Many approaches have been taken in recent months to reach this population, but I think we need to do more.”
Carment said that the population as a whole has been remarkable in its support for the vaccine to date, but said that a new effort is needed to provide access and information to those who have yet to get the shot.
Daniel Paré, the director of the provincial vaccination campaign, said that the first drop-in clinic will open on Thursday of this week, with more to come in regions with lower vaccine coverage across the island of Montreal. A similar model will then be rolled out in other regions of the province.
“We want to go to the places where the vaccination rates are the lowest,” Paré said, noting that an evaluation of the best sites for clinics will be made across all regions of Quebec.
The province reported 3,299 hospitalizations on Monday, an increase of 16 compared to Sunday’s report. The number of people in intensive care, however, decreased by ten to 263.
There were also another 52 new deaths linked to Covid recorded, bringing the total since the start of the pandemic to 12,851.
In the Eastern Townships there were 145 people in hospital with COVID-19, 22 of whom were in intensive care. The region also reported another three deaths for a total of 474.
Third-dose vaccination coverage across the townships increased to 44 per cent over the weekend, four per cent higher than the provincial rate. First-dose rates for those 5-11 in the region remained largely unchanged, at 57. 4 per cent (compared to 61 per cent across Quebec), but second doses in among young townshippers increased to 10.6 per cent (compared to 9 per cent provincewide.