Vaccination planning moving forward

The Ministry of Health has approved the release of two initial shipments of the Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine to the Grey-Bruce region. The first of these shipments arrives this week (January 11, 2021) and the second shipment will be arriving the week of January 25, 2021. In total, the two shipments will contain approximately 1,000 doses of vaccine.

As directed by the Ministry of Health today, the allocation of this initial quantity of vaccine will be limited, exclusively to residents, staff and essential workers in Long-Term Care.

The vaccine approved for use requires two doses, administered a few weeks apart.

Ontario has launched a new webpage detailing the province’s three-phase immunization program, information on COVID-19 vaccines, safety measures and approval standards, as well as daily updates on the number of Ontarians vaccinated.

Status

As of 8:00 p.m. January 11th, the following data applies:

  • Daily doses administered¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†8,859
  • Total doses administered¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†122,105
  • Total vaccinations completed¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†5,884

The province’s decision to identify key populations to receive the vaccine first is based on the advice of medical experts and ethicists, and recommended by the COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Task Force and aligned with the National Advisory Committee on Immunization’s recommendations.

Plans for vaccination will be carried out in three phases and groups receiving the early vaccine doses in the first few months of the Ontario immunization program include:

  • Residents, staff, essential caregivers, and other employees of congregate living settings (e.g., long-term care homes and retirement homes) that provide care for seniors as they are at higher risk of infection and serious illness from COVID-19;
  • Health care workers, including hospital employees, other staff who work or study in hospitals, and other health care personnel;
  • Adults in Indigenous communities, including remote communities where risk of transmission is high;
  • Adult recipients of chronic home health care.

On December 9, 2020, Health Canada approved the first COVID-19 vaccine in Canada, manufactured by Pfizer-BioNTech, and, on December 23rd, approved the COVID-19 vaccine manufactured by Moderna. Health Canada approved the vaccines after independent and thorough scientific reviews for safety, effectiveness and quality. Health Canada will continue to monitor the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine.

Ontario will enter Phase Three when vaccines are more widely available for everyone who wishes to be immunized. Prioritization within this group will also be grounded in the ethical framework, be data driven and informed by available vaccine supply. While vaccines will not be mandated, people will be strongly encouraged to get vaccinated during this phase.