July 13, 2022
HAMILTON, ON – As announced (July 13) by Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, the Province is expanding eligibility for fourth doses of the COVID-19 vaccine starting on July 14, 2022 to include:
- Individuals 18 to 59 years of age, as long as it has been five months since their first booster dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. Individuals can receive a booster dose on a three-month interval. A longer interval has shown to provide better immunity protection.
It is strongly recommended that previously eligible immunocompromised community members 18+ and other high-risk individuals, including community members 60+, First Nation, Inuit and Métis individuals and their non-Indigenous household members aged 18+ and residents of local long-term care homes, retirement homes, or an Elder Care Lodge and older adults living in other congregate settings that provide assisted-living and health services, receive their third and fourth doses of a COVID-19 vaccine immediately to increase protection against severe outcomes of COVID-19, including hospitalization, intensive care unit (ICU) admission and death. It is strongly recommended as well for community members 12+ who have received a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine to get their third dose as soon as they are eligible to be provided with the best protection against the virus.
Community members 18 to 59 years old with an underlying health condition(s), such as heart disease or cancer, are recommended to receive a fourth dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. While most community members aged 18 to 59 years old will continue to have strong protection against COVID-19 more than six months after their first booster dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, expanding second booster dose eligibility will ensure that community members can make an informed decision based on their and their loved ones’ personal circumstances.
To balance the ongoing priorities of Hamilton Public Health Services to reduce deficits of care brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and a local healthcare system that remains under significant pressure, local capacity for COVID-19 vaccination will remain at a sustainable level in the coming months. For those community members between the ages of 18 to 59 who make the personal decision to get a fourth dose, local capacity for administering COVID-19 vaccines will be increasing slightly within certain channels and maintained in other channels, including:
- Hamilton Public Health Services’ Mountain Vaccine Clinic at LimeRidge Mall will increase capacity up to 250 doses per day from 160 doses per day capacity at current.
- 133 neighbourhood pharmacies are offering COVID-19 vaccines.
- Hamilton Public Health Services mobile pop-up vaccination clinics will continue to have capacity to administer 100 doses per clinic, per day.
- Ontario Ministry of Health GO-VAXX bus clinics will maintain capacity of up to 150 doses per day, as available in Hamilton.
Booking An Appointment
Eligible community members in Hamilton can book an appointment for their fourth dose of a COVID-19 vaccine on Thursday, July 14, 2022 at 8 am. Hamilton Public Health Services anticipates demand could be higher than available capacity for those booking an appointment for a fourth dose. Due to a high volume of newly-eligible individuals – in upwards of 160,000 – community members should check back daily for available appointments. Appointments can be booked 14 days in advance, with new appointment dates being added daily.
Information about local COVID-19 vaccine clinic locations, hours of operations, and how to book appointments is available at www.hamilton.ca/GetYourVaccine Additionally, residents are also encouraged to check with local pharmacies who are offering COVID-19 vaccinations.
Hamilton Public Health Services online vaccine booking system, accessed by visiting www.hamilton.ca/GetYourVaccine, can accept bookings for eligible residents with an Ontario health card (green photo health card OR red and white) and an email address or cell phone number. Individuals without an Ontario health card, or without an email address or cell phone number can call the Public Health Services COVID-19 Vaccine Hotline: 905-974-9848, option 7. Translation services are available by phone.
Individuals wishing to receive a first, second or third dose can access a COVID-19 vaccine on a walk-in basis.
It is important for Hamiltonians to be mindful that COVID-19 is still present in the community and increasing trends in cases and wastewater signal data indicate that transmission is increasing across Ontario and here in Hamilton. Individual public health measures are most effective when layered together amongst other actions that individuals and organizations can take to protect themselves and reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission. Hamiltonians are encouraged to consider their own risk factors and those with who they love or spend time with, their risk tolerance and the setting they are in when it comes to protecting themselves from COVID-19.
These protective measures can reduce serious health consequences from COVID-19 infections:
- Get vaccinated and stay up-to-date with vaccines, including the doses that are recommended for you
- Wear a well-fitted mask indoors, especially when it’s crowded
- Stay home if you you’re feeling unwell
- Speak to your healthcare provider (doctor, nurse practitioner) in advance to see if you’re eligible for COVID-19 treatment and where to access
- As of July 11, 2022, an estimated 1,290,112 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in Hamilton. 87.8 per cent of Hamiltonians aged five years and older have chosen to receive a vaccine, and 84.7 per cent are fully vaccinated. 55.5 per cent of Hamiltonians aged 12 years and older have received a third dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and among Hamiltonians aged 60 years and over, an estimated 36.5 per cent have chosen to receive a fourth dose.
- Approximately 60,000 community members aged 60+ are currently eligible and have yet to receive a fourth dose of a COVID-19 vaccine based on a 140-day interval from their third dose. About 160,000 Hamilton residents age 12+ are currently eligible and have yet to receive a third dose of a COVID-19 vaccine based on a 140-day interval from their second dose.
- Individuals between the ages of five and 29 will receive the Pfizer vaccine. Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccines will be offered to community members aged 30+.
- A new bivalent COVID-19 vaccine is anticipated to be approved by Health Canada this fall, which may offer more targeted protection against the Omicron variants.
- Vaccine administration rates may differ based on local context.
- All vaccination planning is based on and contingent on available COVID-19 vaccine supply.