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B.C. COVID-19 vaccination information: Contacts, timelines and what you need to know

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The B.C. government says hundreds of thousands of front-line and essential workers will begin receiving their COVID-19 vaccinatons in April. Richard Zussman reports – Mar 18, 2021

British Columbia is currently in phase 3 of the COVID-19 vaccination rollout plan.

Residents in the general population are now starting to become eligible for the vaccine, starting with the oldest age brackets.

Clinics are being organized in 172 communities across the province and are overseen by one of the five local health authorities.

B.C.’s online booking system is now up and running.

Below are the numbers to call in each health region if you have questions or concerns, or want to register by phone.

Fraser Health

Call 1-855-755-2455 between 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., PST, seven days a week.

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Interior Health

To register, call 1-877-740-7747 between 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., PST, seven days a week.

Island Health

To register, call 1-833-348-4787 between 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., PST, seven days a week.

Northern Health

To register, call 1-844-255-7555 between 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., PST, seven days a week.

Vancouver Coastal Health

To register, call 1-877-587-5767 between 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., PST, seven days a week.

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Phase 3 – CURRENT PHASE

Phase 3 is taking place from April to May 2021.

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This phase targets residents from ages 60 to 79 in five-year increments.

Starting April 1, seniors born in 1949 or earlier could call or go online to make an appointment.

The rest of the rollout is expected to look like this:

  • 69 to 65 (D1 April)
  • 64 to 60 (D1 April/May)

In addition, Indigenous (First Nations, Métis and Inuit) peoples aged 18  and older can receive their first dose in April.

People aged 69 to 16 who are considered clinically extremely vulnerable can receive their first dose in March and April.

Announced on April 19, as part of the province’s strategy to provide the AstraZeneca vaccine to people in high-risk neighbourhoods, people ages 40 and over in specific neighbourhoods where there are high rates of COVID-19 transmission can now get that vaccine at a pharmacy.

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There are four phases total in B.C.’s vaccination plan.

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Phase 1 – COMPLETE

Phase 1 took place from December 2020 to February 2021.

This phase prioritized residents and staff of long-term care facilities, those waiting for long-term care, residents and staff of assisted living facilities, essential visitors to long-term care and assisted-living residents, hospital health care workers on the front lines of COVID-19 care and residents of remote and isolated Indigenous communities.

Phase 2 – COMPLETE

Phase 2 took place from February to April 2021.

Seniors born in 1941 or earlier and who were not immunized in Phase 1 could call to make an appointment.

Read more: ‘Huge relief’: B.C.’s teachers, police officers, front-line workers react to COVID-19 vaccine news

Indigenous (First Nations, Métis and Inuit) peoples born in 1956 or earlier, elders and additional Indigenous communities not immunized in Phase 1 could also call to make an appointment.

In addition, starting in April, front-line workers started receiving their first dose of AstraZeneca/SII COVISHIELD vaccine.

The entire first priority groups included first responders (police, firefighters, emergency transport), K-12 educational staff, child-care staff, grocery store workers, postal workers, bylaw and quarantine officers, manufacturing workers, wholesale/warehousing employees, cross-border transport workers, corrections workers and staff living in congregate housing at places such as ski hills.

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People in this group do not need to call to make an appointment. Appointments will be made by your employer and workplace.

Phase 4

Phase 4 is scheduled to take place from May to June 2021.

This phase will target residents from ages 59 to 18 in five-year increments.

  • 59 to 55 (D1 May)
  • 54 to 50 (D1 May)
  • 49 to 45 (D1 May)
  • 44 to 40 (D1 May/June)
  • 39 to 35 (D1 May/June)
  • 34 to 30 (D1 June)
  • 29 to 25 (D1 June)
  • 24 to 18 (D1 June)

Once you become eligible for a vaccine, you are always eligible. Anyone can call to make an appointment in a later phase as long as they have already been deemed eligible to receive the vaccine.

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Read more: B.C.’s first batch of AstraZeneca headed for workers at food processing plants, industrial camps

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What vaccine will I be getting?

The B.C. government says all of the COVID-19 vaccines in Canada are effective and safe and the first vaccine available to you is the one you will receive.

There are four vaccines approved for use in Canada. They are the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, the Moderna vaccine, the AstraZeneca/SII COVISHIELD (AZ/SII) vaccine and the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

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Transition to provincial digital platform for scheduling B.C. COVID-19 vaccines will begin April 6 – Mar 18, 2021

How to get immunized in Phase 3 and Phase 4

B.C. will transition to a digital province-wide platform, HealthConnect, in April.

Residents can also still register over the phone.

Everyone in this stage will register through HealthConnect or over the phone and will select their preferred method of communication.

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This is how you will be contacted for a vaccine appointment.

When you are contacted to book an appointment you will have to complete a pre-screening and select a location, date and time for your vaccine appointment.

You will then be able to make your appointment online or by phone.

On appointment day, bring ID and dress in a short-sleeved shirt. You will check-in and then receive your vaccine. You will then be asked to wait in an observation area for 15 minutes.

People who get their first vaccine dose will be notified by email, text or phone call when they are eligible to book an appointment for their second dose.

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After receiving the vaccine

Once you have received the vaccine, you can receive a paper or a digital copy of your immunization record card.

If you register for Health Gateway, your digital immunization record card will be available after you receive the vaccine.

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