‘Vaxathon’ encourages Kiwis to get jabbed in fight against Covid

The Vaxathon is being staged this Saturday, October 16, as a national day of action. Photo supplied

New Zealand’s first ‘Vaxathon’ is being staged this Saturday, October 16, as a national day of action calling on every remaining eligible Kiwi to get vaccinated against Covid-19.

Tamati Sheppard-Wipiiti, the Ministry of Health’s Covid-19 Vaccine and Immunisation Programme group manager of equity, says everyone has a role to play to protect the country against the virus by getting vaccinated.

“We’re calling for a massive collective effort to make this happen.

“By far the biggest and most powerful weapon we have in our fight against Covid-19 is vaccination, so we really need everyone from our whānau, families and communities to step up and play their part, and to help us reach those who have not yet come forward.

“The Vaxathon is just one of the ways we’re reaching out, with vaccine clinics also open right across Aotearoa all day and into the evening as part of the nationwide push, so it’s never been easier to get your shot.”

The event is supported by the Ministry of Health, Te Māngai Pāho, Pango Productions, and Discovery ANZ.

It will be screened live on TV3, Māori Television, and Hahana.

Bailey Mackey, from Pango Productions, says the Vaxathon encourages New Zealanders, particularly young Māori, Pacific and tāngata whaikaha (those living with a disability), to get vaccinated.

“The Vaxathon will be broadcast on multiple platforms, including TV3, Māori Television and on Hahana’s Facebook page, from midday to 8pm.

“Well-known celebrities, influencers and health professionals will front the live broadcast, crossing over to Covid-19 vaccination sites to capture the atmosphere and experiences of those receiving their first or second vaccine.

“A live data board, updated in real time, will provide progress measures of how each region is tracking.”

Discovery Australia and New Zealand senior director programming Juliet Peterson says: “We’re delighted to bring the Vaxathon event to audiences across New Zealand this Super Saturday.

“We’re committed to doing all we can to not only inform and entertain our audiences, but also to engage and motivate our communities to get vaccinated and boost our nation’s immunity.”