Ontario will release its plan for administering third doses of the COVID-19 vaccine dose next week, Minister of Health Christine Elliott said Friday.
The information will allow Ontarians to learn when to expect to receive a booster vaccine dose.
The National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) said it has provided “interim guidance” to Canada’s provinces and territories on COVID-19 booster doses, which included its strong recommendation that adults living in long-term care or other congregate settings and those who are 80-plus receive a third dose at least six months after their second shot.
The province began giving a third dose to high-risk people in August amid heightened concerns over the fourth wave and the highly transmissible Delta variant.
Booster shots were given out to those who received transplants, patients with hematological cancers, people who received an anti-CD20 agent and residents in long-term care homes, higher-risk retirement homes and First Nations elder-care lodges.
By mid-September, Ontario had administered thousands of third doses.
NACI’s guidelines released on Friday also recommended the following groups to get their next dose:
- Adults between the age of 70 and 79
- Those who got two doses of AstraZeneca or one dose of the Janssen vaccine
- Adults in First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities
- Adults who are front-line health-care workers in direct contact with patients and who were vaccinated with a short interval between first and second shots
The agency said directives differ between provinces and territories and officials should consider “their own unique circumstances and epidemiology” when making a plan.
Ontario just released its plan to leave Step 3 of its reopening act as COVID-19 case numbers and hospitalizations decline and the proof of vaccination program is in effect. Capacity limits for bars, restaurants and gyms were lifted, as well as limits for outdoor public events such as parades among other things.
As of Friday morning, there are more than 10.9 million people fully immunized with two doses, which is 84.3 per cent of the eligible (12 and older) Ontario population. First dose coverage stands at 88 per cent.