Ontario’s top doctor planning for round of COVID booster shots in the fall

TORONTO — Ontario’s top doctor says he and other health officials are planning for a new round of COVID-19 booster doses to be rolled out this fall.

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Kieran Moore says preparations for a fall COVID-19 strategy are well underway, including vaccinations, and officials are going through various scenarios such as an aggressive flu season and new COVID variants.

In an interview, Moore says there will be another booster dose available for the people most at-risk, with the potential to then open it up to the general public.

He says he anticipates that in the fall a new generation of vaccine will be available that targets both the original COVID strain plus a more up-to-date one that is circulating, such as for Omicron.

Read more: Here’s how masking rules are changing in Ontario come Saturday

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Provincial mask mandates for public transit and health-care settings will expire this weekend — though hospitals say they will keep requiring masks — but Moore says there is an option to bring them back later in the year, if needed.

He says that if another wave of COVID-19 threatens the health system and its ability to deal with the surgical backlog he may bring back mask mandates, but says he doesn’t think any other public health measures will ever be necessary for the virus again.

© 2022 The Canadian Press

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