Sherbourne Health part of a pilot project giving vaccinations in a COVID-19 hotspot

image of team at first vaccination clinic

At the end of March, Sherbourne Health ran our first COVID-19 vaccination clinic at Dixon Hall as part of a pilot project for primary care providers to offer COVID-19 vaccines. In just three days, we administered 205 doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine to Sherbourne Health clients and St. James Town community members who were 60 years of age and above.

Clients were booked for appointments through targeted outreach. Many who received vaccines at the clinic have been unable to access COVID-19 vaccines elsewhere due to a lack of information, no access to the internet, or other difficulties navigating online appointment booking systems.

two friendly healthcare providers showing off vials of vaccine

“In a vaccination campaign like this, it’s so valuable to offer a personal touch to the experience,” says Monika Dalmacio, Clinical Services Manager at Sherbourne Health. “Many of our clients have experienced discrimination in the healthcare system, but when they came to get their COVID-19 vaccine, they were able to see a friendly and familiar face – whether that was a nurse, their family doctor, a community resource worker or someone else that they’ve previously met.”

Dr. Laura Pripstein, Medical Director and Staff Physician at Sherbourne Health, said that it was an “experience like no other.”

“This is why I went into the field of medicine,” said Dr. Pripstein. “This experience of working at this clinic was thrilling, tiring, wonderful, and exhausting. In the end, we were able to give life-saving vaccines to people who really needed our support.”

Thank you to everyone involved in the vaccination clinic, including our partners at Dixon Hall.

Be sure to keep an eye out for more information about our next community vaccination clinic in St. James Town. You can find updated information on our COVID-19 Vaccination Information page.

St. James Town is one of the densest neighbourhoods in Toronto and has one of the highest COVID-19 positivity rates, as well as one of the lowest testing rates. In collaboration with Unity Health, Sherbourne Health is ready to fill the gaps of vaccination availability in a neighbourhood that has been especially hard hit by COVID-19.