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Niagara’s COVID-19 Vaccine Task Force completes mandate to ensure a safer Niagara

With over a million doses of COVID-19 vaccines in Niagara residents’ arms, Regional Chair Jim Bradley thanks the Region’s Community Coordination Task Force for COVID-19 Vaccination as its mandate comes to a close on March 31.
 
The task force was created by Chair Bradley in January 2021 in an effort to bring together health care and community leaders from across Niagara to provide advice on the development of Niagara’s local immunization strategy, including the ethical, timely and effective distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine.
 
Drawing on the specialized experience and expertise of its membership, the task force helped ensure those living in Niagara could be immunized as quickly and safely as possible once vaccine supply became available.
To date, the task force has provided critical guidance which has resulted in several notable accomplishments:
  • Ensuring a local perspective was used to identify vaccination priorities, guided by the principles set out in the provincial Ethical Framework for COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution
  • Facilitating coordinated immunization planning between sectors and leveraging community resources
  • Identify communities of greatest need and making it more convenient for individuals to get vaccinated
  • Contributing to joint education campaigns with Public Health and Niagara Health that were designed to address vaccine hesitancy
The task force made meaningful contributions to many important initiatives, including:
  • Specialized Indigenous clinics
  • Clinics for those living with developmental or intellectual disabilities
  • Dedicated clinics for child care and education workers
  • Mobile clinics for congregate settings and those experiencing homelessness
  • Dedicated clinics for farm and migrant workers
By the end of March 2022, nearly 85 per cent of eligible individuals have received two doses of vaccine. While Public Health, pharmacies and primary care providers continue to administer vaccines, the task force’s primary mandate to provide advice into the prioritization of those vaccines has been achieved.
 
Task force members included:
  • Dr. David Dec (Chair)
  • Niagara Regional Chair Jim Bradley
  • Dr. Mustafa Hirji, Acting Medical Officer of Health, Niagara Region
  • Dr. Karl Stobbe, Medical Director, REACH Niagara
  • Adrienne Jugley, Commissioner, Community Services, Niagara Region
  • Nancy Garner, Executive Director, Quest Community Health Centre
  • Brian Davies, Chief Executive Officer, Bethesda
  • Lucie Huot, Executive Director, CERF Niagara
  • Elizabeth Davis, Director, Home and Community Care Support Services (formerly Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant Local Health Integration Network)
  • Lynn Guerriero, President and Interim CEO, Niagara Health
  • Linda Boich, Executive Vice-President, Niagara Health
  • Kathleen LaForme, Diabetes Wellness Coordinator, Indigenous Diabetes Health Circle
  • Jennifer Dockstader, Executive Director, Fort Erie Native Friendship Centre
  • Jo Zambito, Fire Chief, City of Niagara Falls
  • Martha Mason, Executive Director, Fort Erie Multicultural Centre
  • Sean Simpson, President, Pharmacists Association of Niagara
  • Chief Bryan MacCulloch, Niagara Regional Police Service
  • Frank Ruberto, Executive Director, Niagara Medical Group Family Health Team
  • Regional Councillor Barbara Greenwood, Co-Chair, Public Health and Social Services Committee
  • Chief Kevin Smith, Niagara Emergency Medical Services
  • Tom Kuchyt, CAO, Town of Fort Erie
  • Mike Kirkopoulos, CAO, Town of Lincoln
  • David Oakes, CAO, St. Catharines
  • Ron Tripp, CAO, Niagara Region
  • Natalie Early, Director, Corporate Strategy and Innovation
Dr. Robin Williams, former Associate Chief Medical Officer of Health for Ontario and former Niagara Medical Officer of Health, also acted as a special advisor to the task force.
 
Getting vaccinated against COVID-19, and encouraging others in our community to do the same remains an important step in our continued response to the pandemic. Visit Niagara Region’s website to find a clinic near you.

Quotes

"As this task force winds down after completing their mandate, I want to thank the members of the Community Coordination Task Force for their steadfast commitment to Niagara, and their willingness to share their insights, expertise and specialized experience. This task force made meaningful contributions to the successful implementation of vaccine program in Niagara and our battle with COVID-19."
~ Regional Chair Jim Bradley
"It has been an honour to work in partnership with such a diverse and committed group of individuals, who have come together over the past year to help shape our community’s rollout of these life-saving vaccines. The ability to offer critical input and advice to Public Health and other community partners, in a timely manner and in the face of a rapidly changing COVID landscape, has helped us give those most at risk in our region the best opportunity possible to protect themselves from this deadly virus. I’m proud of what we have accomplished together, and am extremely grateful to everyone who has contributed to the success of this Task Force."
~ Dr. David Dec, Chair, Community Coordination Task Force for COVID-19 Vaccination

Media Inquiries

Andrew Korchok
Niagara Region
905-329-1642
andrew.korchok@niagararegion.ca


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