Ontario accelerates rollout of second shots targeting a two-dose summer
Ontario is preparing to roll out the eligibility for accelerated second dose appointments starting with individuals aged 80 and over, beginning on May 31.
With over 8.6 million doses administered, and over eight million people having received at least one dose, the province has reached its target to administer first doses to 65 per cent of Ontarians aged 18 and over by the end of May.
“Team Ontario has shown what we can do when we have a steady and reliable supply of vaccines,” said Doug Ford, Ontario Premier. “Having made so much progress administering first doses, we are now in a position to begin delivering second doses for a two-dose summer. If we receive more vaccines from the federal government, we’ll be able to accelerate our rollout further to offer more protection to Ontarians even sooner.”
The timing of second dose appointments may vary based on local considerations, vaccine supply and the date of first dose appointment. This will begin with individuals turning 80 and over in 2021, who will be eligible to book their second dose appointment on May 31 at 8 a.m., followed by individuals aged 70 and over scheduled to begin the week of June 14. The province will then continue to expand eligibility for second dose appointments based on date of first dose.
“Thanks to the efforts of our frontline health care heroes and community partners, our province has reached another exciting milestone of 65 per cent of Ontario adults having received their first dose,” said Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “Accelerating second doses will provide more protection to Ontarians sooner. Every dose administered means we are one step closer to the end of the pandemic, and I encourage all Ontarians to get vaccinated and continue following public health advice.”
Ontario has begun offering second doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at an accelerated pace with a 10-week interval for individuals who received their first dose between March 10 to March 19. Acceleration of AstraZeneca second doses will be provided at a 12-week interval, dependent on vaccine supply, with booking eligibility based on the date of the first dose.
The government continues to roll out first doses to Ontarians. Recently, the province expanded eligibility to youth aged 12 and over to schedule a COVID-19 vaccine appointment administering the Pfizer vaccine. To ensure as many youths as possible are fully vaccinated before the start of the school year, the province expects to provide a first dose to all willing youth aged 12 to 17 before the end of June, and a second dose before the end of August.