13yo becomes one of New Zealand's youngest COVID-19 vaccine recipients at drive-through vaccination centre

A 13-year-old has become one of New Zealand's youngest COVID-19 vaccine recipients.

New Zealand's largest vaccination centre opened near Auckland Airport on Sunday, where staff hope to jab almost 2000 people a day. 

For 13-year-old Otis Twose it couldn't have been easier, with the jab taking "two seconds".  

With cases at an increasing number of schools in Auckland, mum Helen was taking no risks. 

"Just the fact that it's in schools and spreading amongst younger people - I think it's really important that they get vaccinated too," Helen tells Newshub. 

He wasn't the only teenager at the Auckland site. With people aged 12-15 now eligible for the Pfizer shot, 15-year-old Annabel Patterson also rolled down her window and rolled up her sleeve. 

The vaccination centre was set up in two days, and on Sunday it accommodated those who had their jab appointments cancelled during the lockdown.

This includes essential workers such as bus drivers and supermarket employees who will get their chance to get their shot. 

"We know it's been a really fluid environment and dynamic over the last couple of days and we just want to apologise to people who've been inconvenienced," Northern Region Health Coordination Centre's Matt Hannant told Newshub. 

Staff hope to be doing 2000 jabs a day, with the potential to increase in the future. 

"So you come through, get screened, check those symptoms, then you get registered then you go through to the tents to get your jab," Hannant says. "The vaccinator comes around the car - does everyone individually."

Once people get their vaccinations, it's over to an observation area where they sit in their car for 15 minutes.  

If everything is okay then they're good to go but if there are any issues they honk their horn, flash their lights and medical staff will be instantly there.

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