Quebec’s private sector has heeded the health minister’s call for help in accelerating the province’s COVID-19 vaccination rollout.
Christian Dubé announced Thursday the creation of 13 corporate vaccination hubs in eight administrative regions.
“I am very proud of the response we received from Quebec businesses,” Dubé said in a news release. “I thank them for their solidarity and their enthusiasm in joining our efforts.
“This initiative, a first in Quebec, is already shaping up to be a great success that will accelerate vaccination among the general population and support the actions of the health and social services network.”
The company responsible for each hub is being tasked with vaccinating not only its own employees, but that of its partners, as well as the employees of nearby businesses and their respective families.
Each in-company vaccination centre is committed to vaccinating 15,000 to 25,000 people, from May to August, with the overarching goal of inoculating 500,000 Quebecers.
The province says it is working to ensure each administrative region has at least one workplace vaccination hub, with additional sites to be announced in the coming weeks.
Members of the general public will also be allowed to receive their shots in a workplace setting.
The ministry, however, is asking that people avoid contacting companies directly to allow them to set up operations. Details of how to book appointments will be released at a later date.
The announcement comes as the province’s vaccination rollout is gaining steam.
All regions have opened up appointments for those over the age of 60, while the AstraZeneca vaccine is being offered to those over the age of 55. In Montreal, essential workers and adults with chronic illnesses are also able to start booking appointments.
The vaccination hubs announced on Thursday, are as follows:
- Banque Nationale, Bell, Couche-Tard, Groupe CH and METRO (Montreal and Brossard);
- BRP (Valcourt);
- CAE (Montreal);
- Cascades (Kingsey Falls);
- Rio Tinto Aluminium vaccination centre (Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean);
- Industrie Côte-Nord (in collaboration with RioTinto IOC, ArcelorMittal Mines and Infrastructure Canada, Aluminerie Alouette and Minerai de fer Québec);
- Merck Canada – Novartis Canada and other pharmaceutical industry partners (Montreal);
- Pôle de la coopération Desjardins and partner in the grand Lévis area;
- Pratt & Whitney Canada (Longueuil);
- Produits forestiers Résolu and Cégep de Saint-Félicien – Haut-Lac-Saint-Jean (Saint-Félicien)
- Société des alcools du Québec (Montreal);
- YUL (Aéroports de Montréal – Bombardier – Air Canada);
- CEZinc – Glencore – Collège de Valleyfield – Centre de services scolaire de la Vallée-des-Tisserands (Salaberry-de-Valleyfield).
Workplace vaccinations are set to begin in early May.
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