Omicron bivalent booster is coming

Ontario expanding bivalent COVID-19 booster to all adults beginning this month

The Ontario government is offering the bivalent COVID-19 booster dose, which targets the Omicron variant, to all Ontarians aged 18 and over.

As of today, the booster appointments are available for the most vulnerable populations, including:

  • Ontarians aged 70 and over;
  • residents of long-term care homes, retirement homes, Elder Care Lodges and individuals living in other congregate settings that provide assisted-living and health services (these residents may receive their bivalent booster dose directly through the congregate home where they live);
  • First Nation, Inuit and Métis individuals, and their non-Indigenous household members aged 18 and over;
  • moderately to severely immunocompromised individuals aged 12 and over;
  • pregnant individuals aged 18 and over; and
  • health care workers aged 18 and over.

All adults 18 and over who don’t fall into the above categories can get a bivalent booster dose beginning Monday Sept. 26 (but can start booking their appointments today).

Ontarians can receive the bivalent booster at the recommended interval of at least six months from their previous dose, regardless of how many boosters they have already received.

Earlier this month, Health Canada authorized the bivalent vaccine (an adapted version of the Moderna Spikevax COVID-19 vaccine). Clinical trial results show that a booster dose of the bivalent vaccine triggers a strong immune response against Omicron (BA.1) and the original SARS-CoV-2 virus strain. It was also found to generate a good immune response against the Omicron BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants and is expected to extend the durability of protection.

Appointments can be booked through the COVID-19 vaccination portal, by calling the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre at 1-833-943-3900, directly through public health units that use their own booking systems, Indigenous-led vaccination clinics, participating health care providers, or participating pharmacies. Pregnant individuals and health care workers booking from September 12 to 25 must call the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre or book booster dose appointments through a participating pharmacy.

Click here for more COVID-19 Ontario updates.

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