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Couple says senior ‘wet his pants’ during long wait at Burnaby COVID-19 vaccination site

Two Burnaby seniors want people to know what they should be prepared for
vaccination vaccine central park
Central Park has served as a COVID-19 testing and vaccination site.

If you are getting your COVID-19 vaccine at the Central Park vaccination site in Burnaby, be prepared because you might be waiting a long time.

That’s according to two Burnaby seniors who shared their story not as a criticism of Fraser Health, but as a helpful tip to other people, especially seniors who are getting their shots in March. (Burnaby Hospital is also serving as a vaccination site.)

Other people have reported long lines waiting at the site on Boundary road.

“They crazy lineups - why'd it take 3 hours for my mom to get vaccinated on Boundary Rd?” one person tweeted out in recent days. “Hints: get better logistics + more roadside assistants to reassure people parked waaaaay back on Boundary panicking they've missed their vaccine time slot.”

John and Mary from Burnaby (they didn’t want to use their last names) wrote to the NOW to detail their experience to help others. 

“Hopefully, this might help those who are booked for vaccination at the site and be prepared for the lengthy wait,” they wrote in an email.

The appointment was for 1:55 p.m., but by the time John – who is 85 years old – had received the shot and waiting the mandatory 15 minutes for observation, it was 3:50 p.m. People are asked to not arrive more than 10 minutes before their appointment.

“We were not prepared for the lengthy wait time on Boundary, and also once we made the turn into the parking lot of the vaccination clinic,” they wrote, adding that some vehicles were cutting into the line to get to the vaccination site.

The site does have a portable washroom, but the letter says signs are posted telling people to remain in their vehicles.

“After John received his vaccine, and was told to wait for 15 minutes in the vehicle, we noticed there was an elderly couple in the vehicle in front of us,” says the letter. “When the driver, an elderly gentleman, got out of the vehicle, John noticed that the gentleman had wet his pants and was heading for the portable washroom.”

B.C. is reported 19,623 new vaccinations administered on March 17 for a total of 444,140 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 86.55 per 1,000. In the province, 1.70 per cent (87,093) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to British Columbia for a total of 597,070 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 12 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 74.39 per cent of its available vaccine supply.

Nationwide, 610,071 people or 1.6 per cent of the population has been fully vaccinated. The provinces have administered doses at a rate of 8,995.95 per 100,000.

  • With files from the Canadian Press