Team Manitoba's captain, Premier Brian Pallister, rolled up his sleeve to get a shot from the province’s top doc Thursday and encouraged all Manitobans to follow suit.
Pallister, 66, took a seat at the RBC Convention Centre’s vaccine supersite Thursday morning for his first dose of the Pfizer vaccination, administered by chief provincial public health officer Dr. Brent Roussin.
The two joked around in the near-empty immunization hub before Pallister bared his right arm (he's left-handed) and took the jab. The process took just minutes.
"I encourage everybody as soon as it’s their turn to get this vaccine," Pallister said after getting his dose. "The sooner we can get that herd immunity thing going on, the sooner we can start to reduce our restrictions and get back to seeing our friends and our family more frequently, get our seniors some more company and do the important things about helping our community recover."
The premier called the vaccine process "simple," adding the shot wasn’t painful.
"It’s certainly a sense of relief for me as an older person with asthma to know that I’ve had this vaccine," he said. "I thank all the researchers that worked so hard to develop these vaccines and I thank Dr. Roussin as I do for his team and for his work throughout this pandemic."
In a statement Thursday, Pallister added "vaccines are safe, effective and they help save lives," and he commended the vaccine implementation task force and legion of provincial volunteers for their work.
Pallister sported a bright green ‘I’m COVID-19 vaccinated’ sticker on his blazer as he strolled out of the convention centre a short time after getting his shot.
Julia-Simone Rutgers is a general-assignment reporter.