SFU-led projects

Thousands vaccinated at SFU pop-up vaccination clinics

October 27, 2021
A sign advertises the pop-up vaccination clinic at SFU's Surrey campus. The clinics were held at all three SFU campuses. About 2,000 vaccines were administered.

Over the past month and a half, thousands of students, faculty, staff and community members have received their first or second COVID-19 vaccines thanks to a series of pop-up vaccination clinics at SFU’s three campuses.

Beginning Aug. 27, the university, in partnership with both Fraser Health and Vancouver Coastal Health, held 15 pop-up vaccination clinics at the Surrey, Vancouver and Burnaby campuses. The free, no appointment, drop-in clinics were open to anyone older than 12. Around 2,000 vaccines were administered.

“Overall, it’s been very effective,” says Melissa Lafrance, a special projects manager for SFU’s COVID-19 response, who worked with Fraser Health Authority to help co-ordinate dates and locations with SFU’s Meeting, Event and Conference Services (MECS), Residence and Housing, Facilities Services and Fraser International College (FIC). She also worked with Student Services to create a website to promote the pop-up clinics at all three campuses.

“The clinics vaccinated a lot of people and we strengthened existing partnerships with Fraser Health and Vancouver Coastal Health.”

The genesis of the pop-up clinics emerged as health authorities moved away from large-scale vaccination centres, like the one at the Vancouver Conference Centre, to focus on community-based approach, through pop-up clinics.

Getting vaccinated remains the most important thing each of us can do to protect ourselves and our community. There is strong evidence that the Health Canada-approved vaccines are safe and effective at preventing infection and severe illness.

“We were pleased that clinics were busy,” says Lafrance, of the turnout. “Anecdotally, we heard that people were lining-up before the clinics even opened.”

For some of the clinics, Lafrance says, SFU’s Health Peer Educators also ran community outreach, sharing vaccine information and handing out coffee cards.

As the clinics were open to the public, they attracted people from the wider community, like those living in UniverCity on Burnaby Campus. The clinics in Surrey and Vancouver in particular attracted a lot of non-SFU people as both campuses are centrally located.

The first pop-up clinic at SFU’s Vancouver campus, which was organized by the Vancouver campus administration team and Vancouver Coastal Health, drew more than 260 people – one person vaccinated every two minutes – with 85 per cent of people coming from the surrounding community.

Getting vaccinated is the most important thing we can do to protect ourselves and our community from COVID-19. If you need to get your first or second COVID-19 vaccine, you can find ongoing vaccination clinics in Fraser Health here, and in Vancouver Coastal Health here.