(B.C. government)

(B.C. government)

COVID-19: B.C. names new lead for ‘largest’ vaccine rollout in province’s history

Health Minister Adrian Dix said this the largest vaccination effort in provincial history

B.C. has announced a new leader for the province’s rollout of COVID-19 vaccinations.

In a news conference early Wednesday afternoon (Jan. 13), Health Minister Adrian Dix announced Vancouver Coastal Health chair Dr. Penny Ballem will take executive lead of the vaccination efforts.

“She’s been working with this team with extraordinary diligence for the past 12 months,” Dix said.

Dr. Ross Brown, who has been heading the program since November, will stay on under Ballem’s direction.

“I feel very happy and honoured to have this opportunity,” Ballem said. “It’s a mammoth task, but it can be done.”

READ ALSO: B.C. expert breaks down COVID vaccine myths, reasons for hesitancy

This marks the largest vaccination effort in the province’s history, Dix said.

As of Tuesday, 62,294 British Columbians had received the first of two doses of COVID-19 vaccines. More doses of the Pfizer vaccine are expected Wednesday or Thursday with more doses of the Moderna vaccine expected Friday.

OPINION: O Christmas Tree, O COVID vaccine

Federal officials are aiming to have a majority of Canadians be inoculated by the fall.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said she was pleased to welcome Ballem to the team as health officials across B.C. work to scale up vaccine rollouts as more doses arrive. Henry added officials will have further details on upscaling vaccine efforts in the next few days.

As of Tuesday, there were a recorded 1,019 COVID-related deaths in B.C. The province has recorded a total of 58,553 cases.

More to come.


 

@adameditor18
adam.louis@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirusvaccines

Just Posted

A rockfall closed Finlayson Arm Road and West Shore Parkway on Friday (March 5) afternoon. (Twitter/BC Transportation)
UPDATED: Malahat reopens following rockfall

Section of Trans-Canada Highway was scheduled for intermittent closures today for rock scaling work

The Tsartlip First Nation was outraged after Green MLA Adam Olsen revealed on social media that the community had been experiencing a COVID-19 outbreak – a fact the First Nation had chosen to keep private to avoid racist backlash as experienced by the Cowichan Tribes when an outbreak was declared there in January. (Black Press Media file photo)
Tsartlip First Nation ‘outraged’ after Green MLA revealed COVID-19 outbreak

Chief shares concerns about racist backlash, MLA Adam Olsen apologizes

A man holds a picture of Chantel Moore during a healing gathering at the B.C. Legislature in Victoria on June 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
‘Police have killed more Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation members than COVID’

First Nation demands transparency in probe into Tofino RCMP shooting of Julian Jones

The B.C. Supreme Court ruled Feb. 26 that the estate of deceased Sooke man and Hells Angels prospect Michael Widner is to be divided between his wife and his secret spouse. (Black Press Media file photo)
Estate of deceased Hells Angels prospect from Sooke to be divided between wife and secret spouse

Michael Widner’s 2017 death left a number of unanswered questions

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C. on the COVID-19 situation. (B.C. government)
Dr. Bonnie Henry predicts a ‘post-pandemic world’ for B.C. this summer

‘Extending this second dose provides very high real-world protection to more people, sooner’

Malawian police guard AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines after the shipment arrived in Lilongwe, Malawi, Friday March 5, 2021. Canada is expecting its first shipments of AstraZeneca vaccine next week. (Associated Press/Thoko Chikondi)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 cases climb to 634 Friday, four more deaths

Currently 255 people in hospital, 66 in intensive care

A Port Alberni RCMP car blocks access to Anderson Avenue at Burde Street. (RCMP PHOTO)
Replica firearm prompts police incident in Port Alberni

RCMP had blocked off a neighbourhood while searching for ‘man with a gun’

A Victoria resident was scammed out of $1,700 after a fraudster impersonated a police officer and convinced the victim to pay a non-existent fine in Bitcoin. (Unsplash)
Fraudster impersonates Victoria police officer, steals $1,700 in Bitcoin

Phone call showed up as VicPD’s non-emergency line

A crashed helicopter is seen near Mt. Gardner on Bowen Island on Friday March 5, 2021. Two people were taken to hospital in serious but stable condition after the crash. (Irene Paulus/contributed)
2 people in serious condition after helicopter goes down on Bowen Island

Unclear how many passengers aboard and unclear where the helicopter was going

Supporters rally outside court as Pastor James Coates of GraceLife Church is in court to appeal bail conditions, after he was arrested for holding day services in violation of COVID-19 rules, in Edmonton, Alta., on Thursday March 4, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
‘Law remains valid:’ Pastor accused of violating health orders to remain in jail

The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms is representing the pastor

Walkers ascend Mount Douglas Park on Sunday, Feb. 7. Visits to Saanich Parks are up 46 per cent compared to pre-pandemic statistics this time last year. (Darrell Wick Photo)
Oak Bay, Saanich parks peak in popularity during pandemic

Oak Bay spent an extra $5,000 on park toilet paper in 2020

On Feb. 27, a construction vehicle remained on the site of the former encampment between the Pat Bay Highway and McKenzie Avenue as part a clean-up effort. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
Encampment between Pat Bay Highway, McKenzie Avenue cleared, all residents relocated

Efforts to disband encampment resumed after January fire

Holly the stuffed Rottweiler has been missing from the front of Lucky Dog U-Bath since Feb. 24. (Submitted photo)
Holly the stuffed Rottweiler is missing from Duncan shop

Toy dog missing from front of Lucky Dog U-Bath since Feb.24

Most Read