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Vaccine eligibility expands for at-risk conditions, essential workers, 40+ in London-Middlesex

On Thursday at 8 a.m., those over the age of 40 will be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. Global News

Starting Tuesday, COVID-19 vaccine eligibility will expand to those with at-risk health conditions as well as essential workers who cannot work from home in London and Middlesex.

According to a release from the Middlesex-London Health Unit (MLHU), the expansion will take place at 8 a.m. Tuesday.

Read more: London and Middlesex adds 27 new COVID-19 cases Monday

At-risk health conditions include dementia, diabetes and sickle cell disease, according to the release.

The MLHU says essential workers who cannot work from home include those working at grocery stores, pharmacies and restaurants.

A full list of who will be eligible can be found on the health unit’s website.

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On Thursday at 8 a.m., those over the age of 40 will be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine.

The health unit says pending provincial notification, vaccine eligibility will be expanded to include individuals over the age of 30 on Thursday, May 20, and to those over the age of 18 on Thursday, May 27.

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In addition to expanded eligibility, the MLHU says Ontario has also added high-risk health-care workers to the list of those eligible to book a second-dose appointment with a shortened interval between doses.

Starting Friday, May 14, those in this group can call the COVID-19 vaccine booking line and say that they’re eligible to book a shortened-interval appointment.

The online booking system cannot be used to reschedule or book a second-dose appointment.

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The complete list of Group 2 essential workers who cannot work from home is available on the province’s website.

Read more: COVID-19 — Ontario likely to mix 1st, 2nd vaccine doses amid lack of AstraZeneca supply

Dr. Chris Mackie, the medical officer of health with the MLHU, clarified that not all health-care providers are eligible.

“It’s only those that are in high-risk, front-line positions,” he said.

As of Monday, Mackie says 51 per cent of adults in the London and Middlesex region have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

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Mackie says about 216,000 doses have been administered.

Read more: COVID-19 — Ontario government looking to extend provincewide stay-at-home order into June

Those looking to book a vaccine appointment can do so online or by calling 226-289-3560 between 8 a.m. and 7:30 p.m., seven days a week.

Those rescheduling a second-dose appointment should call the same number.

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