COVID-19 Immunizations

On this page you will find information related to immunizations for COVID-19 in B.C. The latest information and booking schedule will appear at the top of the page, further down there is information related to the registration process, priority populations and workplaces + important links.

 

Last Updated: April 14

 

Online registration is now open, along with a provincial phone line. You can register online here: How to get vaccinated for COVID-19 – Province of British Columbia (gov.bc.ca)

You can register by phone 1-833-838-2323 (Available 7 days a week from 7am to 7pm)

The new schedule for age cohorts to register for their vaccine:

• Mon, April 12, 12 p.m. – Born 1966 or earlier (55+)
• Wed, April 14, 12 p.m. – Born 1971 or earlier (50+)
• Fri, April 16, 12 p.m. – Born 1976 or earlier (45+)
• Mon, April 19, 12 p.m. – Born 1981 or earlier (40+)

Learn more and register: http://gov.bc.ca/getvaccinated

There can be a wait time between when you register and when you’re invited to book your appointment. Wait times vary depending on your age, vaccine supply, and where you live.

 

 

Vaccine Supplies

 

My office has received a number of inquiries recently related to our immunization plan. Many of these questions are related to distribution- such as asking why our vaccine clinics are not running 24 hours a day, or why other jurisdictions in the world are ahead of us in the amount of people immunized.

B.C. is administering vaccines as soon as they are received, but there have been challenges with supplies. For example there were delays in February for a number of weeks and more recently there have been delays of our supplies of the Moderna vaccine- 80,000 doses that were to be received around March 25th, were just received this past weekend and a shipment of 105,000 doses that were expected this week are now delayed. We continue to receive regular and consistent supplies of the Pfizer vaccine, and we are awaiting more information on when we can expect supplies of the newly approved Johnson&Johnson vaccine.

B.C. is ready and prepared for mass immunizations, and we continue to distribute doses to health authorities as soon as they are received. The only constraints right now are related to the amount of doses we have.

While Canada used to have domestic capacity to manufacture our own vaccines, the previous federal government made the decision to eliminate this capacity. Countries that are most ahead in their immunizations are ones that have this domestic capacity.

The federal government is working very hard to secure vaccine supplies, and we are reliant on this work and the supplies that they can secure. However we remain prepared to ramp up immunizations as we receive more supplies.

 

 

Priority Workers

 

We are currently ahead of schedule which means we are able to move up the age based immunizations, while also expanding the number of workplaces included in the Front Line priority vaccines. The following workplaces have been identified as priority for vaccines:

 

 

People in these groups do not need to call for an appointment- these appointments will be arranged with the Health Authority and Employer.

Other Priority groups (no call in required)

  • Hospital staff, community general practitioners (GPs) and medical specialists not immunized in Phase 1
  • Vulnerable populations living and working in select congregated settings
  • Staff in community home support and nursing services
  • Employees and workplaces identified in priority groups
  • People considered “Clinically Extremely Vulnerable” will receive a letter from the Health Authority that lets them know they are eligible to book their appointment. You must bring this letter with you when you go for your appointment

 

Please note that the health authority will never ask for your SIN number, Drivers License number or banking/credit card information.

 

When you call to book your appointment you will be asked for the following information:

 

 

 

 

How to get immunized in Phase 3 and Phase 4

The process to get immunized will happen in three steps.

Step 1: Registration

British Columbians in Phase 3 and 4 (people born in 1942 or later, Indigenous peoples born in 1957 or later) will register through HealthConnect, a simple online registration system, or by phone.

Registration will help us book appointments quickly and easily. When it’s time for you to register, you will select your preferred method of communication. This is how we will contact you to book a vaccine appointment.

 

Step 2: Make an appointment

When you are contacted to make a vaccine appointment, you will be asked to:

  • Complete a pre-screening
  • Select a location, date and time

You will be able to make your appointment online or by phone.

Step 3: Appointment day

Come prepared to your appointment and arrive a few minutes before your scheduled time. At the immunization clinic you will:

  • Complete a check-in process
  • Get your vaccine dose
  • Wait in an observation area for about 15 minutes

 

 

 

 

Getting the second dose

People who get their first vaccine dose will be notified by email, text or phone call when they are eligible to book an appointment for their second dose.

 

 

Vaccination Effectiveness

 

Data gathered so far in B.C., other jurisdictions in Canada and throughout the world show that the effectiveness of the vaccine is around 90%- even after the first dose.

The below graphs shows the impact vaccines have had on Long Term Care home outbreaks and COVID cases in Health Care Workers. We know that once you receive your first dose of the vaccine it takes your body around 2-3 weeks to build immunity to the virus- and as you can see there has been a large reduction in cases and outbreaks once immunity is reached.