Updated: Cates Pharmacy has since posted the following update on its Facebook page:
"Our current batch of vaccinations are now done. Going forward, we will not be making anymore appointments and will be providing future batches in the way of walk-ins only. Vancouver Coastal Health is only distributing limited batches to pharmacies and, unfortunately, we cannot provide an exact timeline for our valued customers."
Islanders interested in getting vaccinated need to call 604-947-0766 to book an appointment.
COVID protocols are in place and as such, the first couple of weeks of shots will take place in the orange tent set up in the Village Square parking lot.
“Everything will be done outside, nobody’s coming into the pharmacy,” explains pharmacist Simin Mirpourzadeh.
Upon arrival to an appointment, one must wear a mask, pass a quick COVID screening and sign a consent form.
The appointments are in 15 minute blocks (one must wait for 15 minutes after receiving the shot) though families can come together.
Mirpourzadeh also notes that people should wear something that will easily expose their shoulders. “So that they can go in and out pretty quickly and smoothly,” she says.
While this week’s appointments are filled up, next week still has some availabilities. After the initial rush has died down, the vaccinations could move inside.
While Mirpourzadeh recommends injected vaccinations, the pharmacy also has a limited number of the intranasal spray vaccine FluMist.
The vaccines are publicly funded and free for all.
Vancouver Coastal Health is recommending that, particularly this year, every one above six months of age get a flu shot.
Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has said that the province expects to have enough vaccines to meet demand in a year where demand is expected to be high.
Have you got any burning questions you’d like to ask a pharmacist? Once a month we’ll catch up with Cates Pharmacy to answer your most common queries. Email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org before the last Friday of every month.