To help reach Team Toronto’s target of 90 per cent of residents age 12 and older being fully vaccinated, the City of Toronto’s VaxTO campaign, which launched this past spring to connect Torontonians with COVID-19 vaccination appointments and information, is shifting its efforts towards converting all eligible first dose recipients to become fully vaccinated, second-dose recipients.
As of October 11, 215,000 Toronto residents still needed to be vaccinated to reach 90 per cent coverage with both doses in the eligible population. Of these residents, 123,000 have received their first dose. Among residents who have received their first dose, 48,200 are considered overdue for their second dose (more than 107 days past first dose). Those in the 18 to 24 and 25 to 29 age groups represent the highest rate of partially-vaccinated individuals who are now overdue for their second dose.
Continuing with its evidence-informed approach and employing tools such as highly targeted text messages, broadcast voice messages and live calling through its call centre, VaxTO will work to remove any remaining barriers to second dose vaccinations facing residents who have already received their first dose. This includes using live agents to connect with individuals wherever possible and tackling a variety of vaccine hesitancy and accessibility concerns.
Since its launch, the VaxTO campaign has helped connect thousands of residents with COVID-19 vaccination information and resources through a variety of targeted, multilingual outreach methods. This includes sending approximately 1.3 million broadcast voice messages to phone numbers across the city in seven different languages, making more than 41,000 phone calls to residents through the call centre, and receiving more than 17,000 text messages through the text line, which offers 14 different language navigation options. Ten telephone town halls ranging from city-wide, to ward and language specific have also been hosted with approximately 100,000 total attendees.
“We have been so successful helping millions of residents get vaccinated. But there are still thousands of eligible residents who remain unvaccinated or are only partially vaccinated. With the latest variant and case numbers growing, it is more important than ever that we continue our efforts of breaking down barriers to vaccination across the city to get as many residents vaccinated as possible. In this next phase of the VaxTO campaign, our focus will be on connecting with residents who have already received their first dose to encourage them to get their second. The more Torontonians we can get fully vaccinated, the safer and healthier we will all be.”
– Mayor John Tory
“Thanks to our Team Toronto partners, we’ve made incredible strides in our immunization campaign, with more than 82 per cent of eligible Torontonians now fully vaccinated. But there’s still more work ahead. By focussing on second dose conversion, we’ll be able to connect to Torontonians that still need their second dose and provide information about getting their second shot while addressing any issues, hesitancies, or concerns they might be experiencing. By reaching out and engaging with people directly, we’ll be able to encourage thousands of Torontonians to get fully vaccinated and help to keep themselves, and our city, safe.”
– Councillor Joe Cressy (Spadina-Fort York), Chair of the Toronto Board of Health
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