- Stephen Lecce, MPP
Ontario Expands COVID-19 Vaccination Booking to Individuals 45 and Over in Hot Spot Communities
April 27, 2021
TORONTO — The Ontario government is expanding booking for COVID-19 vaccination appointments to individuals 45 and over in designated hot spot communities in 13 public health units, as identified by postal code, through its provincial booking system. Child care workers in licensed child care settings across the province will also be eligible to book their COVID-19 vaccination appointments. As of 8:00 a.m. today, all individuals who are 45 and over in 2021, living in one of the 114 high-risk neighbourhoods, will be eligible to book a COVID-19 vaccine appointment at a mass immunization clinic through the provincial online booking system and call centre or directly through public health units that use their own booking system. “This is a step forward in Phase Two of our vaccine distribution plan to ensure we are protecting people and communities most at risk,” said Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “By using every available channel to deliver vaccines, we are working to vaccinate Ontarians as quickly as possible and stop the spread in our communities. I encourage everyone who is eligible to book their appointment as soon as they can.” Despite facing consistent challenges in receiving a stable and reliable supply of COVID-19 vaccines, Ontario has continued to ramp up capacity and expand its rollout to additional groups. Keeping childcare open is critical to the mental health and well-being of children and in supporting working parents in Ontario. Effective Thursday, April 29, 2021, child care workers in licensed child care settings will be eligible to book an appointment through the Provincial Vaccine Booking Line number at 1-833-943-3900 or directly through public health units that use their own booking system. Eligible workers in licensed child care settings will receive a letter from their employer. This letter must be available at the point of booking and taken to the vaccination appointment. In the coming weeks, eligibility will be expanded to child care workers in unlicensed child care settings across the province. “Ontario’s child care workers are making a difference and supporting working parents at this critical time,” said Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education. “That’s why child care workers provincewide will be eligible to book a vaccine appointment. Our child care centres are safe and the expansion of vaccines will further protect children and staff.” Ontarians who are now eligible to book their vaccine appointment are asked to be patient, as it could take time for them to receive an appointment. Vaccine administration rates are based on supply of vaccines from the federal government, local context and may differ as vaccine supply is delivered across the province. For more information on local vaccine rollout, individuals are encouraged to visit their public health unit’s website. "Expanding age bands within hot spot communities is part of our targeted approach to help limit the spread of COVID-19 in neighbourhoods and communities that have been disproportionately impacted by this deadly virus,” said Solicitor General Sylvia Jones. “I am encouraging everyone to please get vaccinated when it is your turn as this is the best way to protect your health and the health of those around you.”
As of April 26, 2021, at 8:00 p.m., almost 4.8 million vaccine doses have been administered across the province, with over 90 per cent of Ontario residents aged 80 and over having received at least one dose and 36.6 per cent of the population aged 18 and over having received at least one dose. More than 88 per cent of residents aged 75 to 79 have now received their first shot. Over 326,000 Ontarians are fully immunized.
Only COVID-19 vaccines that Health Canada determines to be safe and effective are approved for use in Ontario. All COVID-19 vaccines available in Ontario have been shown to prevent serious illness, hospitalization and death.
Ontario has received 5,248,345 doses of vaccines since December 2020. In April, the province received 1,584,180 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, 706,300 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine and 764,800 doses of the Moderna vaccine. The province is expecting 4,089,150 doses of Pfizer in May and is waiting for confirmation of shipments for Moderna, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson.
Individuals aged 18 and over are eligible for vaccination through mobile teams and pop-up clinics in targeted hot spots. Find out if you live in a hot spot community by visiting Ontario’s website for a list of designated postal codes. Mobile and pop-up clinics in hot spots for those 18 and older will be promoted locally within their target communities and local public health units.
Hot spot communities are located in these 13 public health unit regions: Durham Region Health Department; Halton Region Public Health; City of Hamilton Public Health Services; Niagara Region Public Health; Ottawa Public Health; Peel Public Health; Simcoe-Muskoka District Health Unit; Region of Waterloo Public Health and Emergency Services; Wellington-Dufferin Guelph Public Health; Windsor-Essex County Health Unit; York Region Public Health; Toronto Public Health; and Southwestern Public Health.
To further support hot spot communities, the Ontario government is dedicating 25 per cent of vaccine allocations to hot spot communities across the 13 public health unit regions, targeting mobile teams, pop-up clinics, mass immunization clinics, hospitals and pharmacies.
Eligible groups can use Ontario’s vaccine booking system to find out how to schedule an appointment, or can call the Provincial Vaccine Booking Line number at 1-833-943-3900. For general inquiries, individuals can call the Provincial Vaccine Information Line number at 1-888-999-6488. The Provincial Vaccine Booking Line and Information Line are open Monday to Sunday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and is capable of providing assistance in more than 300 languages.
Adults aged 40 and over in 2021 are eligible for vaccination at participating pharmacies. Visit ontario.ca/pharmacycovidvaccine to find a participating pharmacy and contact the pharmacy to see if you need an appointment or if walk-in (first come, first served) vaccinations are available.
Employers, who are located within an identified hot-spot community and meet the eligibility criteria, can inquire about hosting an onsite clinic by contacting email@example.com.
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For up-to-date information on the populations currently eligible for vaccination and instructions on how to book an appointment when you are eligible, visit Ontario’s vaccine webpage.
Visit Ontario’s website to learn more about how the province continues to protect the people of Ontario from COVID-19.