City Lends Support to Interior Health for Hosting of Vaccination Clinics at Municipal Recreation Facilities
In support of the provincial vaccination efforts for COVID-19, the City of Kamloops is working with Interior Health to provide facilities for vaccination clinics in Kamloops. Both the curling rink at McArthur Island Sport and Event Centre and a portion of the Tournament Capital Centre (TCC) Fieldhouse will be closed to the public this spring to accommodate Interior Health for approximately seven months or until they no longer require the space for mass vaccinations. The City has also reserved the option for Interior Health to use one hockey sheet at the McArthur Island Sport and Event Centre if the need arises.
“We are working in partnership to not only provide space, but also municipal staff at both facilities for cleaning, general facility maintenance, parking control, technical support, and also firefighters to support the vaccine rollout,” said Mayor Ken Christian. “This will come at a cost to the City and an inconvenience to our community, but it is absolutely worth it for the health and wellness of our community.”
The curling rink at the McArthur Island Sport and Event Centre sees limited usage over the summer months, so its closure will have minimal impact to residents. Portions of the TCC Fieldhouse will remain open to the public with modified access during both the March clinic and the mass vaccination clinic. Patrons at the TCC can expect the following adjustments:
- modified access points to the Fieldhouse floor
- “half-track” walking loop
- reduced exercise stations
- no drop-in basketball or table tennis
“These immunization clinics, particularly at the TCC, will definitely impact our community and a number of user groups that use the indoor track and courts throughout the spring and summer. However, this is a temporary impact and before long, we can return to doing the things we enjoy doing,” said Sean Smith, the City’s Business Operations and Events Supervisor.
All winter recreation programs are ending in March and will not be impacted by the vaccination clinics. Some spring and summer programming will be cancelled; however, these cancellations will not be reflected in the Spring and Summer Activity Guide due to press deadlines. Residents should check Kamloops.ca/PerfectMind for updated schedules.
As modified access is still available, memberships will not be automatically cancelled; however, memberships that extend into the impacted dates can be cancelled without penalty. Arrangements can be made by emailing email@example.com.
During the vaccination clinics, designated parking will be reserved for clinic patients and patrons with limited mobility. All patrons may experience limited or alternate parking options and should try to arrive early to allow adequate time for parking.
“As the vaccination plan evolves, we may need to make further changes to our operations,” said Smith. “Residents should visit Kamloops.ca/TCC for the most up-to-date information.”
Vaccination Clinic Information
The next phase of B.C.’s COVID-19 Immunization Plan is launching and Interior Health will be moving ahead to provide immunizations to many more people; starting with those who are most vulnerable to severe illness from COVID-19.
As of March 8, booking will be open to seniors age 90 and over and Aboriginal seniors age 65 and over by calling 1-877-740-7747 from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m., PST, seven days a week.
The age eligibility of who can call to book appointments will change over time. Interior Health’s Phase 2 vaccine information is available here: https://news.interiorhealth.ca/news/covid-19-vaccines/
“When you are eligible for a COVID-19 vaccination, I appeal to everyone in Kamloops to make your appointment, recognizing that this immunization plan is designed to save lives and stop the spread of COVID-19,” said Dr. Carol Fenton, Interior Health medical health officer.
Immunize BC has information on dose timing, vaccine allergies, timing, and more: https://immunizebc.ca/covid-19-vaccine-frequently-asked-questions.
Important Municipal Links
- The City’s response to COVID-19: Kamloops.ca/COVID
- Operational changes at the TCC: Kamloops.ca/TCC
- Spring and summer program registration: Kamloops.ca/PerfectMind
Important Health Link
- Immunization phases: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/covid-19/vaccine/plan
- Interior Health information: https://news.interiorhealth.ca/news/covid-19-vaccines/
- Other helpful information: ImmunizeBC.ca