On Dec. 27 the Southlake Community Ontario Health Team (OHT) partnered with the Town of Newmarket to begin operating a vaccination clinic at Ray Twinney Recreation Complex.
The clinic will operate Monday to Friday. For now, appointments and hours are limited but there are plans to ramp up operations in the new year.
“Getting vaccinations to the residents of Newmarket and York Region is a top priority for the Town of Newmarket. We are proud to partner with the Southlake Community OHT to provide a new clinic at the Ray Twinney Centre providing more vaccinations closer to home,” said Newmarket Mayor John Taylor in a media release.
In aligning with the eligibility outlined by the Ontario government, the clinic will provide first and second doses to those over 12 years of age, as well as boosters for those 18 years of age and older, as per the government eligibility criteria.
The clinic will reduce the burden on healthcare resources by providing increased vaccination options to residents of Northern York Region and Southern Simcoe County.
"As we continue to navigate this rapidly changing pandemic, we know increasing access to vaccinations for our community is essential in the fight against COVID-19. The Southlake Community OHT is committed to playing our part in supporting our communities and helping to reduce the strain COVID-19 is having on our healthcare system,” said Dr. David Makary, Southlake Community OHT Primary Care Lead and Community OHT Joint Executive Steering Committee co-chair, in a media release.
Southlake encourages everyone in the community to continue to adhere to public health measures by wearing a face covering, washing hands regularly and limiting contact with others.
“This vaccine has proven how important it is in protecting our communities. The timely and efficient launch of the Southlake Community OHT clinic is a great example of being responsive to the needs of the people we serve and demonstrates what we can achieve when working together to provide greater access to vaccinations at this crucial time,” said Christina Bisanz, chief executive officer of CHATS-Community & Home Assistance to Seniors and Southlake Community OHT Joint Executive Steering Committee co-chair, in a media release.
The OHT concept was introduced by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care in 2019 to enable a group of healthcare providers from a set geographical area to deliver care to the residents in that area.
Instead of working independently from one another, the teams, which can include hospitals, doctors and home and community care providers, work together in partnership as a coordinated unit to provide support and care.
The Southlake Community OHT is made up of healthcare providers and organizations, patients and family-member stakeholders.
Appointments are required and can be booked through Ontario's COVID-19 vaccination portal.