Ministry of Health suggests live music at mass vaccination events to attract more Kiwis

The Ministry of Health has suggested DHBs provide entertainment at mass vaccination events in an effort to provide a "relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere" for those waiting to get their shot. 

COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins alluded to plans to include social elements at mass vaccinations during Wednesday's media update.

He said the Government would not be providing monetary incentives for Kiwis to get vaccinated, but the ability to "build events" around vaccination would be something it would "keep in the toolkit".

"Once we've got the methods around doing the vaccination part really nailed down, there's the potential to add other things to that, to build that kind of environment where people will be encouraged to come forward," he said. 

"I'm aware of other countries that have built social events around a vaccination event, and there's the potential for us to think about that in New Zealand, too." 

A spokesperson for the Ministry of Health confirmed that while it was in the "very early phase of rolling out mass vaccination events", musical performances could be considered down the line. 

"While there isn't any specific entertainment scheduled for the mass events being planned at this stage, it's certainly something DHBs can consider," a statement given to Newshub read. 

"These events could provide entertainment such as acoustic live music that creates a relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere for people waiting to be vaccinated, as well as their whānau." 

The MoH said that in principle, on-site activities could be offered, provided they don't distract or interfere with the clinical elements of a mass vaccination event.

The country's first mass vaccination event will take place in South Auckland next weekend.