Sunday, April 14, 2024

Vaccine jabs for over 50s from Friday

COVID-19 vaccine bookings for New Zealanders aged 50-plus are being brought forward to this Friday, following strong uptake from the 60-plus and 55-plus age groups, COVID-19 Response Minister, Chris Hipkins said today.

“Being able to open another age band so quickly is a real confidence booster and shows how well New Zealand is embracing the vaccine,” Minister Hipkins said.

“We opened 55-plus 10 days after 60-plus, instead of the planned two weeks, and are now opening 50-plus after 7 days.”

He said there were about 300,000 people in the 50-plus age group.  

“Last week was the best yet in the vaccination programme. We reached two million doses on Tuesday and by the end of the week passed more than 2,200,000 doses in total. On the Wednesday we set a record of 45,082 doses in one day across the country.”

“The booking system continues to perform well with a record 296,650 vaccinations booked last week. We now have 1,009,536 vaccinations booked in the system. Over the last three days the 0800 call centre handled 27,695 calls with an average wait time of less than one minute.

“This is a great all round response and means we’re in position to open the 50-plus age band for vaccinations earlier than planned.”

Eligible people in the 50-plus group can make their own booking from 8am Friday by visiting, or by calling the 0800 28 29 26 COVID Vaccination Healthline (8am-8pm, seven days a week).

“People in other groups who are eligible and who are not vaccinated yet can also continue to book – there’s no cut-off,” the Minister said.

“Consignments of the vaccine continue to arrive as expected. One million doses of the vaccine were delivered in July, and another 1.5 million will be delivered in August, 388,000 of these arriving yesterday morning.”

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