MidCentral DHB (MDHB) COVID-19 Vaccination Programme Iwi and Māori Lead, Adele Small, says the the clinic, held from 9am - 5pm at the Eketāhuna Community Centre, has been driven by the community through the Eketāhuna Health Centre, with support from Rangitāne and Ngāti Kahungunu iwi, and MidCentral District Health Board staff.
“We know it can be harder for people and their whānau in rural communities to get into central vaccination sites so we want to ensure communities have easy access to opportunities to be vaccinated and protect themselves and their whānau from COVID-19.”
“We encourage Eketāhuna residents to book in for their vaccines quickly and we are expecting a good turnout. If you are a resident of Eketāhuna and you have not received an invitation to book your vaccine, please call the Eketāhuna Health Centre on 06-375 8188.”
Local kaumātua and kuia Warren and Everlyn Chase have held a key role connecting the MidCentral DHB team with the Eketāhuna community.
“It’s been important for us to be involved in getting our community vaccinated so that we can be safe and continue to be around for our grandchildren and great-grandchildren,” Warren said.
“We really hope people take up this opportunity to get vaccinated and protect themselves and their whānau from COVID-19.”
Adele said that bookings for this clinic were essential.
“The vaccine is free and safe, and there is enough vaccine for everyone. If this clinic is fully booked, we will be providing additional clinics in the future.”
The Eketāhuna rural-focused clinic is just the start for rural communities in the MidCentral district, with further rural vaccination clinics planned for across the rohe.