British Columbia

Extreme heat creating obstacles for COVID-19 vaccination program in parts of B.C.

A record-breaking heat wave has created a hiccup for B.C.'s COVID-19 vaccination program, as several clinics in the Lower Mainland are postponing appointments or redirecting patients to other locations.

Some school districts modifying schedule for last day of school on Tuesday

Some British Columbians have seen their vaccination appointments postponed or redirected because of an extreme heat wave. (Evan Mitsui/CBC)

A record-breaking heat wave has created a hiccup for B.C.'s COVID-19 vaccination program, as several clinics in the Lower Mainland are postponing appointments or redirecting patients to other locations.

Fraser Health says it is implementing heat-related measures at seven immunization and testing clinics in the region until the end of the day on Tuesday.

Any walk-in patients or people with appointments booked after 12 p.m. at those clinics are being redirected to other sites with cooler temperatures.

The affected clinics include the Testing and Immunization Centres in Burnaby, Mission, South Surrey, Coquitlam, Langley and Surrey 66, as well as the Abbotsford Ag-Rec Centre Immunization Clinic.

Vancouver Coastal Health postponed all vaccination appointments at the West End Community Centre and the Vancouver Community College clinic as of 1 p.m. on Monday.

People with appointments at the ICBC vaccination clinic were being diverted to the West Vancouver Community Centre clinic.

The health authority says it will monitor weather conditions throughout the week and will notify those affected if more adjustments are necessary.

During Monday's COVID-19 briefing, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry acknowledged that some vaccination appointments had to be rebooked over the weekend because of the heat. Still, a weekend record of 61,053 shots were administered.

Meanwhile, many B.C. school districts have modified their schedules for Tuesday, the last day of the school year, in light of the heat.

In Richmond, the school district is asking that students only stop by their schools if they need to pick up things they've left behind.

In-person classes will end at noon in Vancouver, while in Langley classes will end after two hours.

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