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BC launches vaccination appointments program for those 80+, increases time between doses

BC rolled out its vaccination plan for seniors over 80 and Indigenous elders over 65 on Monday.

The program will have public health workers contact seniors in independent living and seniors supportive housing beginning March 2.

Those not living in assisted care will be asked to call public health to book their own appointment on a staggered schedule.

Immunization clinic locations will be confirmed at the time of booking, with vaccinations starting as early as March 15, 2021.

  • March 8, 2021: Seniors born in or before 1931 (90 years+)/Indigenous peoples born in or before 1956 (65 years+) may call to book their vaccine appointment.
  • March 15, 2021: Seniors born in or before 1936 (85 years+) may call to book their vaccine appointment.
  • March 22, 2021: Seniors born in or before 1941 (80 years+) may call to book their vaccine appointment.

The number to call has not yet been made available, but will be given here.

Officials also confirmed that first and second vaccinations will now be spread out by 16 weeks.

The decision was made following the first round of immunizations in long term care homes, where the vaccine provided a "high level" of about 90% protection after just one dose.

"This gives us a very real and important benefit to everybody here in BC," said Dr. Bonnie Henry.

"That means we can move everybody up the list and more people will be protected sooner."

Originally the doses were spread out by 28 days, then it was pushed to 42 days and now it is 112 days.

In mid-April, Phase 3 will begin mass vaccination of people aged 60 to 79 years and people aged 16+ who are extremely clinically vulnerable at community immunization clinics throughout BC.

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