Some Hamiltonians are choosing between vaccines, but no doses wasted: health official

Hamilton's medical officer of health says doses of COVID-19 are not being wasted, though some residents are choosing between vaccines. Lisa Polewski / 900 CHML

Hamilton’s medical officer of health stresses that the city is not throwing out any unused COVID-19 vaccine.

Dr. Elizabeth Richardson has been prompted, under questioning by Glanbrook Coun. Brenda Johnson, to respond to what Johnson calls “misinformation” that is circulating through emails and social media.

Read more: Hamilton reports 2 more COVID-19 deaths, 50 per cent of adult population vaccinated

That led the councillor to ask directly, during Wednesday’s general issues committee meeting, “are we throwing out vaccines?”

“Absolutely not,” replied Dr. Richardson. “These are things the public pays for, but particularly, in this case, these are gold.”

Dr. Richardson does confirm some residents are “choosing between vaccines.”

“We’re particularly seeing this around the Moderna vaccine, right now,” she said. “Sometimes people show up and when they find out that it is Moderna that is available for them, they’re choosing to go and rebook their appointment.”

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Dr. Richardson insisted the both Moderna and Pfizer are “great” and “important” vaccines.

Read more: Limited or no appointments available for COVID-19 vaccinations at Hamilton clinics: public health

“Minimizing wastage is one of the critical principles as we go forward,” Dr. Richardson said. “We want those shots in arms and we have plans, when we have extra doses, to get them in arms.”

Hamilton reached a milestone on Tuesday, as 50 per cent of residents who are 18 and older have now received their first COVID-19 vaccination.

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