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'Put those selfies out': Dr. Bonnie Henry calls on British Columbians to celebrate vaccine status

B.C.'s top doctor is calling for your selfies.
On May 17, 2021, Dr. Bonnie Henry top called on BC residents to celebrate getting vaccinated against coronavirus (COVID-19) by sharing a vaccine selfie.

Have you shared your enthusiasm for B.C.'s vaccination program on social media?

While many people have been hesitant to share that they have been immunized against COVID-19, B.C.'s top doctor says they should celebrate getting vaccinated. 

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry told reporters in the daily coronavirus briefing on Monday (May 17) that vaccination rates are increasing across the province but that it is still too early to make any significant changes to existing health measures. As such, people should urge their loved ones to roll up their sleeves. 

"You know it's available to all of us now so celebrate it, you know, put those selfies up so that your family, your friends, everybody knows that you've taken that pledge," she said. 

Since every adult in B.C. is now eligible to be vaccinated, Henry noted that now is the time to "support each other" in an effort to raise the rate of immunization in the province. 

And while it is too early to say exactly what percentage of the population is hesitant to get the vaccine, over 55 per cent of eligible adults have been vaccinated to date. "We are seeing that people in British Columbia want this vaccine," added Henry.

Health officials are also looking at ways to reach out to community groups to encourage people to get vaccinated through direct information and the "This Is Our Shot" campaign. 

The bottom line?

"Get out there, get immunized," she said. "We have more vaccine coming."

Dr. Bonnie Henry joins national campaign to end vaccine hesitancy 

In the wake of soaring cases of coronavirus, the "This Is Our Shot" campaign aims to spread the message that vaccines are safe — and everyone needs to roll up their sleeves. 

Launched in April, the campaign was driven largely by groups that have been reaching out to and advocating for racialized communities bearing the brunt of the pandemic. The goal is to dispel vaccination myths and to answer questions in more than two dozen languages. 

The campaign also underscores that COVID-19 may cause serious illness and death in people of all ages, not only older adults or people with chronic medical conditions. 

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry showed her support for the national campaign in a short video that was shared on Twitter.

"I got vaccinated because it's the best thing to do to protect yourself, the people you love and our whole community," she said. 

Henry also encouraged Canadians to join the "this is our shot" challenge and to tag their families and friends to do the same.  

With files from the Canadian Press.