The innovative made-in-Canada solution for mass COVID-19 immunization developed by Grey Bruce Health Unit has garnered world-wide interest.
Known as the Hockey Hub model, the blueprint uses arenas and community centres for a patient-centric approach to immunizing the largest number of people in as short a time as possible while keeping patients safe.
Three centres in Grey-Bruce are now open in Hanover, Owen Sound and Kincardine.
When the Hockey Hub concept (presentation attached) was presented to General (ret’d) Rick Hillier, former Chief of Defence Staff for the Canadian Forces and chair of the province’s Ministers’ COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Task Force, he said it was “A great example for rural and small urban areas across Ontario to consider – very much Hockeyville Canada!“
According to Dr. Ian Arra, Grey Bruce Medical Officer of Health, the concept is a complete paradigm shift when it comes to patients and immunizations.
Set up in a standard hockey arena, the Hockey Hub can administer 4500 vaccines in a 10-hour shift of 5 vaccinators. Traditional large volume clinics administer about 1000 vaccines a day, employing 20 vaccinators. Conventional smaller vaccine clinics administer 400 vaccines a day, in a shift of 8 vaccinators. The efficiency of the Hockey Hub model is based on using clinical staff for clinical duties only and other staff for any task that is non-clinical. The Hockey Hub uses a streamlined flow-through process.
The model is scalable in that it can be expanded or contracted depending on the amount of vaccine available and the number of clients to be vaccinated.
The Hockey Hub at the Davidson Centre in Kincardine is located in the basketball gymnasium.
“This has all been about collaboration,” said Anne Eadie, Mayor of the Municipality of Kincardine as she toured the facility on Thursday, March 11th.
The following day, on Friday March 12th, the Owen Sound Hockey Hub opened at the Bayshore Community Centre.
The Owen Sound Hockey Hub follows the same protocols that have been established by the Grey Bruce Health Unit. Patients must have a pre-booked appointment and are then screened at Registration before entering the immunization clinic room and being directed to a sanitized pod. Vaccinators move easily throughout the room delivering the vaccines so that patients do not leave their pods until ready to exit the facility.
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Dr. Arra explained the set-up to media and Owen Sound city officials as they toured the site.