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B.C. seniors warned about potential phone fraud during vaccine rollout

Seniors are being warned about scammers asking for personal information in order to book a vaccine appointment. Steve Silva / Global News

B.C. health officials and police agencies are warning people to stay vigilant about potential vaccine scams.

Recently, a Kamloops resident said they received an email asking for their SIN number so they could be registered for the vaccine.

Police said there has been an uptick in these kinds of emails and calls over the last few weeks.

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B.C. seniors are able to start booking vaccine appointments next Monday so there is now a push to help keep everyone aware of potential fraud.

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“Health authority call centres will never ask for your SIN, driver’s licence, banking information or credit card,” said Dr. Penny Ballam, B.C. Immunization Plan lead, on Monday.

“If our seniors find themselves on a phone call where people are asking them that, they’re on the wrong phone call.”

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Beginning March 8, 2021, seniors aged 80+ and Indigenous peoples aged 65+ who are not living in independent living or seniors supportive housing can make one call to book their appointment through their local health authority call centre, according to a staggered schedule.

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This is to avoid long waits and system overload.

Immunization clinic locations will be confirmed at the time of booking, with vaccinations starting as early as March 15, 2021.

  • March 8, 2021: Seniors born in or before 1931 (90 years+)/Indigenous peoples born in or before 1956 (65 years+) may call to book their vaccine appointment.
  • March 15, 2021: Seniors born in or before 1936 (85 years+) may call to book their vaccine appointment.
  • March 22, 2021: Seniors born in or before 1941 (80 years+) may call to book their vaccine appointment.

— with files from Richard Zussman

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