Manitobans can expect to see targeted ads regarding the COVID-19 vaccine as part of a new advertising campaign called #ProtectMB.

New ads about the COVID-19 vaccine rollout will be launched soon with various goals, ranging from asking enthusiastic Manitobans to encourage others to get the vaccine, to diminishing vaccination myths.

"We are launching a new campaign to communicate directly with Manitobans and encourage COVID-19 uptake," Dr. Joss Reimer says in a Wednesday press conference.

With the new campaign, a website has been created, helping Manitobans to easily book their appointment and get information on the vaccines, including myth-busting.

"The website will have tools for Manitobans who are keen to get the vaccine so that they can share with their friends, their families, and their social networks."

Anticipating a boom in online booking, a waiting room has been created.

Dr. Johanu Botha says while the phone booking system and the online booking system have different inputs, it is the same system, preventing overbooking and holding booked spots.

bothaBotha says Manitobans will be "off to the races" if they have their Manitoba health card when booking online. (Screenshot: Government of Manitoba/YouTube)

"When I see that over 80 per cent of Manitobans are eager to get the vaccine I am really encouraged by that. If we can get 80 per cent of Manitobans immunized, we are going to be in a completely different situation than we were at this time last year," Reimer says, calling it an "awfully great" starting point.

In a statement, Health and Seniors Care Minister Heather Stefanson says "we all have a role to play in stopping the spread of COVID-19 in our province. The vaccine will protect us and the people we love. I’d encourage Manitobans to sign-up online so they’re ready to be immunized when it’s their turn.”

Overall, Reimer is finding the AstraZeneca/Covishield vaccine rollout at medical clinics and pharmacists is going well, and a supersite in Morden will be opening soon.

The vaccine eligibility age is decreasing, down to 73 years old or First Nation people aged 53 or older. The doctor is expecting these numbers to drop throughout the week, moving to those aged 65 or older by next week.

New doses being received this week includes:

•    112,320 doses of Pfizer vaccine;  
•    49,400 doses of the Moderna vaccine; and
•    18,000 doses of the AstraZeneca/Covishield vaccine.  

A total of 179,720 doses of vaccine have been delivered to Manitoba, and  113,275 doses of those have been administered.