PEI

'Couldn't even feel it': Islanders 80 and older roll up sleeves as COVID-19 vaccination clinic opens

Elinor Neuffer, three months away from her 82nd birthday, said she was feeling 'very lucky' on Monday after receiving her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Charlottetown site of 1st community clinic on P.E.I. to begin vaccinations

Sheila and Harold Pineau prepare to get their first shot of COVID-19 vaccine on Monday. (Brittany Spencer/CBC)

Elinor Neuffer, three months away from her 82nd birthday, said she was feeling "very lucky" on Monday after receiving her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Neuffer was one of about 150 Islanders aged 80 and over to get their shot Monday as the Island's first community vaccination clinic opened in Charlottetown.

About 4,500 people have been booked for COVID-19 vaccine appointments, after calling a phone line set up specifically for that purpose. They are seniors who live in their own homes or with relatives rather than in community or long-term care facilities, which were the target of the first vaccination drive on the Island starting in December.

"I'm feeling very lucky that we are able to get them," Neuffer said of the vaccines. "Let's just hope that pretty soon the whole world will be vaccinated, or 80 per cent."

A. Lea Hogan, 94, was the first person to get the vaccine at the clinic Monday. She said it's nothing to worry about.

"You couldn't even feel it."

Charlottetown's COVID-19 clinic has been set up in the Sherwood Business Centre. (Brittany Spencer/CBC)

Later this week, clinics will open in Summerside, Montague and O'Leary. The province is planning to get about 900 vaccinations done a week at the clinics, with all the booked appointments for first and second doses cleared by the end of March.

Elinor Neuffer, 81, was one of about 150 people scheduled to receive their first COVID-19 vaccine on Monday. (Brittany Spencer/CBC)

The province has also made plans for clinics for Indigenous adults. The Chief Public Health Office is working with the health-care centres in Abegweit and Lennox Island First Nations to get everything in place.

The Lennox Island clinic is set to open with initial shots Tuesday and the Abegweit one next week.

Vaccines will be offered at four locations on P.E.I. by the end of the week, so far serving only seniors aged 80 and up who have made appointments. (Dado Ruvic/Reuters)

Marion Dowling, P.E.I.'s chief of nursing, said she's happy with the way the vaccine rollout has been going.

"We're keeping ahead of what the supply is, and that's really the over-arching goal. When it comes here, we're not holding on to it, we're getting it out there into arms."

More from CBC P.E.I.

With files from Brittany Spencer

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