Soup-er Wellness Wednesday Vaccination Clinics Extended To End Of Winter
Following the success of Soup-er Wellness Wednesday at the New Plymouth and Hāwera vaccination centres throughout June, Taranaki DHB is extending the vaccination incentive to happen every Wednesday for the rest of Winter.
Feedback about the clinic has been extremely positive. A parent who attended Soup-er Wellness Wednesday earlier this month said, "We had an amazing experience at the vaccination hub. We came in to get my children (both 9) their second COVID-19 vaccination. Friendly check in and then pretty much straight into a children's room with nurse Lou.
"All three of us also took the opportunity to get our annual flu jab while we were there. Lou was fantastic with the kids. While there were a few tears, everyone walked out feeling proud of themselves knowing that we've done the best we can to protect our family’s health this winter."
Free flu shots are already available for everyone over the age of 65 and those at risk of becoming seriously ill or who have underlying conditions. From Friday 1 July free flu vaccinations will also be available for children aged 3-12 years and people with serious mental health or addiction needs-.
Dr Catherine Jackson, Taranaki DHB medical officer of health said, "I strongly recommend people get vaccinated against the flu to reduce their risk of being infected, so I am thrilled to see free flu vaccines announced for children aged 3-12 years. This is a big step forward for protecting whānau through the winter months and improving equity for Māori and Pasifika."
She adds, "While pre-school and primary school-aged children have the highest rates of influenza in the community, hospitalisations are highest in the very young, older people, and people with ongoing health conditions. Vaccinating children against flu and COVID-19 will help protect the rest of your family from flu as children transmit flu to those around them even if they are not very sick themselves."
Having COVID-19 and flu at the same time significantly increases your risk of hospitalisation and death, so now is a good time to check you are vaccinated against both viruses. People are also being reminded that if it has been three months since they (or their whānau) have had COVID-19, they can now get their next vaccination.
There is no need to book an appointment - just walk-in to the New Plymouth Vaccination Centre (Baker Tilly Building, 109 Powderham Street) or the Hāwera Vaccination Centre (TSB Hub, Camberwell Road).
Alternatively, people can get their vaccinations at their GPs, pharmacies, Māori health providers, or any of the Winter Wellness Clinics happening in communities throughout Taranaki over the coming months. More information about these community drop-in clinics can be found at www.tdhb.org.nz.
Everyone who has a COVID-19, flu or measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccination on Wednesdays in July and August at either vaccination centre will receive a nourishing cup of soup, bread and a winter wellness pack to help combat winter ills and chills.
Packs will include all sorts of helpful items, including tissues, hand sanitiser, rapid antigen tests (RATs), face masks, coffee sachets and more. Spot prizes of winter-warmer items like hot water bottles, beanies, bed socks (etc.) will also be available on these days.
Sharon Crowe, Taranaki COVID-19 Vaccination Programme clinical team leader says, "Vaccinations are a safe, easy and effective way to help you and your whānau stay well this winter. So, come on down to the Vaccinations Centres in New Plymouth and Hāwera or to our Winter Wellness Clinics around the maunga. We look forward to seeing you."
If people have any special requirements due to disability, impairment or long-term health conditions, they can email Covid.VacEnquiries@tdhb.org.nz and our staff will make arrangements to meet their needs.