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COVID-19: MLHU, libraries partner to reach those yet to book vaccine appointments

The Middlesex-London Health Unit is teaming up with the Middlesex County Library and London Public Library to try to reach adults eligible for COVID-19 vaccination but who have not yet received their shot.

Effective immediately, staff at the local library branches will call library cardholders aged 70 and older “to ensure they have the information they need to book a COVID-19 vaccination appointment and that they know where to find more information if they have questions.”

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The health unit estimates more than 80 per cent of people 75 and older and more than 65 per cent of those aged 70 to 74 have had their first dose of vaccine.

“There has been strong demand for the COVID-19 vaccines since we launched our public vaccination campaign, but we know that there were challenges for some folks when it came to booking appointments,” says MLHU medical officer of health Dr. Chris Mackie.

“We are confident that our library partners in London and Middlesex County will be able to reach many of those who have yet to make an appointment and support them in getting vaccinated against COVID-19.”

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In London, the health unit says the partnership will reach more than 9,200 residents aged 70 and older.

Once those calls are made, the libraries will then reach out to those aged 60 to 69, or roughly 13,000 cardholders within the London Public Library system.

“This is such a tangible way that we can use our skills and relationships with our community to assist those who may experience barriers to booking an appointment or need help finding more information. We’d like our community to know that we will navigate this together,” says LPL CEO Michael Ciccone.

The Middlesex County Library will reach out to more than 2,000 cardholders aged 65 and older.

“As trusted community connectors, it really is a natural fit for Middlesex County Library staff to participate in this initiative,” says Middlesex County director of library services Lindsay Brock.

“A number of barriers to access exist for our residents, including challenges related to internet service, so we want to do everything we can to help bridge these gaps.”

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