Middlesex London Health Unit extends eligibility for COVID-19 booster shots

Covid-19 vaccine shot. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Lars Hagberg

Those in London and Middlesex County who are considered high risk will now be able to book an appointment for a booster shot of a COVID-19 vaccine.

This comes after the Ontario government announced Wednesday that it was extending eligibility for booster doses of a COVID-19 vaccine.

“Two doses of vaccine offer excellent protection against COVID-19,” says Dr. Alex Summers, associate medical officer of health with the Middlesex-London Health Unit.

“Adding a booster dose provides that extra layer of protection, particularly against the Delta variant because of how easily it can spread, for seniors and other individuals at higher risk.”

Those eligible for a booster shot include those born in or before 1951 (70 and over) and health-care workers and designated essential caregivers in congregate settings (including long-term care home staff).

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Those who received a complete series of a viral vector vaccine, meaning those who have two doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine or one dose of the Janssen (Johnson and Johnson) vaccine, are also considered high risk.

First Nations, Inuit and Métis adults and their non-Indigenous household members are also now eligible for a booster shot.

Third doses of both the Pfizer-BioNTech Comirnaty vaccine and the Moderna Spikevax vaccine will be available at the health unit’s mass vaccination clinics.

The health unit has also noted that individuals who received first or second doses of the AstraZeneca Covishield vaccine can receive an mRNA vaccine for their third dose.

All of the information on eligibility is available on the MLHU’s website.

Residents looking to book an appointment for a booster shot can do so online. Appointments are required for third doses and the health unit says walk-ins are not available.

The Lambton Public Health Unit has adopted a similar policy, with eligible people now able to receive a third dose 6 months (168 days) after their second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

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Residents can book and re-book COVID-19 vaccine appointments for the LPHU or find information on vaccine availability at pharmacies using the health unit’s registration page. People can also call the vaccine call centre at 226-254-8222.

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