New Zealand’s Covid vaccination programme is set to rollout on Saturday.
Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins says a dry run of the end-to-end process shows the programme is ready to roll from Saturday, when the first border workers will receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.
“The trial run took place in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch yesterday afternoon, ahead of the vaccination programme formally kicking off on Saturday,” says Hipkins.
“Officials have been working on logistics for months, and the dry run gave them an opportunity to stress test the system, identify any gaps and put plans in place for any event.”
Hipkins predicts there will be some challenges with logistics as the programme is rolled out.
He says the system set up for phase 1 – vaccinating the border workers – is robust and flexible, but the more planning that is done, the better the outcome will be.
“The final steps in preparing for the first border workers to receive their vaccines on Saturday and for the start of the overall programme, will include the vaccinators who will vaccinate the border workers receiving the vaccines themselves. This will take place tomorrow.
“While our workforce modelling shows we only need 100 vaccinators to immunise everyone who works at our border, we already have more than that who have completed the necessary training to administer the Pfizer vaccines, and hundreds more set to complete it in coming weeks.”
In today's media update, Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield announced there are no new cases of Covid in the community.
Dr Bloomfield says there are three cases of Covid-19 at the border in managed isolation facilities today.