OTTAWA, ON, April 29, 2021 /CNW/ – As we continue to roll out COVID-19 vaccines across the country, the Government of Canada is committed to addressing and reducing barriers to vaccination.
Today, during National Immunization Awareness Week, the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health, announced an investment of $2.25 million through the Immunization Partnership Fund (IPF) for two projects to support vaccination efforts. These projects will support vaccine uptake by ensuring Canadians have access to credible information on vaccination, as well as equipping healthcare providers and Canadians with proven strategies to manage pain and fear during vaccination.
The Canadian Association of Science Centres, in partnership with COVID-19 Resources Canada and the Health Law Institute at the University of Alberta, have created ScienceUpFirst, a project to address misinformation in Canada by giving Canadians the tools to spread science-based information about COVID-19 and vaccines. Drawing on a network of scientists, healthcare providers, and science communicators, this national initiative aims to debunk misinformation with credible COVID-19 facts, as well as reach vulnerable populations with culturally relevant and scientifically accurate COVID-19 information.
“This year’s National Immunization Awareness Week comes at a critical stage in Canada’s COVID-19 response. The vaccines we have in Canada are safe and effective, and I encourage everyone to get vaccinated when it is your turn. This funding will help trusted leaders within the science and healthcare communities share credible information on vaccines, and address barriers people face in getting vaccinated.”
The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health
We are also supporting the University of Toronto’s CARD (C-Comfort, A-Ask, R-Relax, D-Distract) System project, which addresses fear of needles among adults through pain management. Using proven best practices, this initiative will design and implement pain mitigation strategies for adults during vaccination to reduce their fears and encourage them to get vaccinated. The information and strategies developed through this project will be shared among health care networks, and the general public, to help people feel more comfortable when it’s their turn to get vaccinated.
The Government of Canada is working closely with experts, provinces and territories, and other partners to better understand what barriers Canadians may face to getting vaccinated, and to encourage vaccine confidence. The IPF is one way we are reaching Canadians, through community mobilization, public outreach, and communications efforts across Canada to support Canadians in making informed choices on vaccination. When we get vaccinated, we protect ourselves, our loved ones, and our communities against COVID-19.