Ontario expands COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to those 18+ a week ahead of schedule

TORONTO — Starting tomorrow, all Ontario residents over the age of 18 will be able to book a COVID-19 vaccine, a week ahead of the province’s initial rollout schedule.

The government said the decision to widen eligibility was based on an increase in vaccine supply.

“With 2.2 million doses scheduled to arrive this week, the government is extending booking eligibility at mass immunization clinics to individuals aged 18 and over,” the province said in a in a news release issued Monday.

Bookings open at 8:00 a.m. on Tuesday and are accessible to anyone 18 years of age and over, including 17-year-old residents who will turn 18 in 2021.

Before today’s announcement, residents 18+ were able to book their jab, but only if they lived in one of the province’s designated 114 hot spot communities.

The province says it will also open eligibility up to children ages 12 to 17 for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine by May 31.

According to the government, more than 7 million needles have gone into arms throughout the course of the vaccine campaign.

Some 429,000 people have received two doses and are considered by the Ministry of Health to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. 

Ontario is currently in the second phase of it’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout, which focused on older adults, people in high-risk settings, frontline essential workers and other populations that are at greater risk of illness.

Phase 3 is set to begin in July and will see needles go into the arms of anyone who wants to be immunized.

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