Monday, September 26, 2022

Bivalent COVID-19 Boosters Available In Grey-Bruce Starting This Week

The Grey Bruce Health Unit has announced that the Moderna Spikevax bivalent COVID-19 booster – shown to provide greater protection against Omicron – will be available to eligible individuals at Public Health vaccination clinics and via community partners starting this week.

The booster will initially be available to the most vulnerable residents and then to all Ontarians aged 18 and over beginning September 26, as per the Ontario Ministry of Health.

The availability of the bivalent vaccine in Grey-Bruce is great news and will become another very important tool in our continued fight against COVID-19,” explained GBHU Physician Consultant Dr. Rim Zayed. We continue to urge everyone, especially those most at risk of severe outcomes from COVID-19, to stay up to date on their COVID-19 vaccines. For most age groups, this means getting a booster dose as vaccine protection has been shown to decrease over time.”

Public Health has received a limited supply of the bivalent vaccine.

All efforts are being made to supply community partners and our Health Unit community clinics with the bivalent vaccine, which will also be available to eligible individuals at local GO-VAXX clinics. Appointments for booster doses are required and can be booked using the online Provincial Booking System or calling 1-833-943-3900.

On September 1, Health Canada authorized the use of the Moderna Spikevax bivalent vaccine as a booster dose in adults aged 18 and older. This 50 mcg formulation contains equal parts of mRNA encoding for the original SARS-CoV-2 virus and the Omicron BA.1 variant. It has been shown to provide greater protection against the original strain, Omicron BA.1, and Omicron BA.4 and BA.5.

Booster doses are recommended based on the ongoing risk of infection due to waning immunity, the ongoing risk of illness from COVID-19, the societal disruption that results from transmission of infections, and the adverse impacts on the health system capacity from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Effective Monday, September 12, the following high-risk groups will be recommended and eligible to receive their fall COVID-19 bivalent (Moderna) booster dose, regardless of the number of booster doses previously received:

  • Residents of long-term care homes, retirement homes, elder care lodges, and adults living in other congregate settings that provide assisted-living and health services;
  • Individuals aged 70 and older;
  • Individuals who are 12 years and older with moderately to severely immunocompromising conditions;
  • First Nation, Inuit and Métis individuals and their non-Indigenous household members aged 18 and over;
  • Pregnant individuals aged 18 years and older;
  • Health care workers aged 18 years and older.

Effective September 26, all individuals aged 18 and over will be eligible to receive a fall COVID-19 bivalent (Moderna) booster dose, regardless of the number of booster doses previously received.

These individuals can begin booking their appointments through the Provincial Booking System right away even if they do not belong to one of the high-risk groups.

Eligible individuals must be a minimum of three months (recommended six months) since their last COVID-19 booster or primary series completion, and a minimum of three months post-COVID-19 infection to receive a bivalent COVID-19 booster.

For a list of upcoming clinics please access the COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic Schedule on the website (https://www.publichealthgreybruce.on.ca/Portals/0/Topics/InfectiousDiseases/COVID19/Weekly_Vaccine_Schedule.pdf).

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