Why many Canadians get into the’limbo’ dilemma without an appointment for the 2 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine
When Rory Armstrong was eligible for the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, he was taken aback by the vaccine.
The 61-year-old Edmonton resident and his wife filmed the AstraZeneca-Oxford shooting in a hospital’s pop-up clinic on March 15 in the same week. Except for a few aches and pains, the two people It all felt good afterwards.
Armstrong said that in the months since then, people have been worried that the couple will be “on the edge”. So far, they have not received any information about when to receive the second dose of the vaccine, even though the time for Alberta’s re-injection of AstraZeneca is at least 12 weeks and no later than four months after the first dose.
He said: “We heard nothing. Our due date is the first week of June.”
Canadians across the country shared similar experiences with CBC News on the grounds that local health officials lacked information, tried to book a second dose of appointments, and felt the patchwork of different booking systems and access points from pop-up clinics to popularization. Confused about the pharmacy immunization center.
“Someone is worried: Will we get the second shot on time?” Armstrong said.
The second dose rate varies by region
At present, the second dose situation varies greatly among provinces and regions.
In northern Canada, the vaccination rate is the highest in the country: nearly 60% of all Yukon residents have received both vaccines, about half of all residents of the Northwest Territories and more than one-third of Nunavut.
In the provinces, the proportion of people who are fully vaccinated has dropped dramatically, ranging from about 2% to 7%-the Canadian average is slightly higher than 3%.
Many more Canadians (half of the country) receive a dose of medicine.
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The reason for this difference is that most regions are currently following the recommendations of the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) to postpone the second dose of injection to four months, which gives medical service providers the opportunity to vaccinate Provide protection for as many people as possible during this period. slow.
Recently, NACI also blessed the use of Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccine for Canadians as young as 12, Some provinces have started dating people of this age group.
But Tania Watts, a professor of immunology at the University of Toronto, said the second dose should not be aggravated.
Watts said: “We want to take the second dose on time to get the motivation we all need.”
“Now we have [more Canadians] In the case of the first dose, they started to vaccinate a 12-year-old child, and we really need to-simultaneously-inject these doses into the body. “
But the email has been submitted to Ask the CBC News team Residents across the country are worried that from the cancellation of the second appointment via voicemail messages, to pharmacies where people don’t know when they can book, to how to get the much-needed boosted injections for vulnerable people such as cancer patients, it all arouses people. s concern.
“I waited, waited, waited”
Like Rory Armstrong, a resident of Edmonton who is waiting for information on the second dose, John Freeman, a 77-year-old resident of Ottawa, said he has not yet been appointed and cannot get the next step. Any details.
Freeman said he tried to book a preliminary vaccination appointment through the province’s online system, but despite several attempts, the website was still frozen.
Instead, he called his local public health official, who ordered him to a pop-up clinic near his home. On March 28, both he and his wife were vaccinated against Pfizer for the first time.
But looking at his confirmation file, Freeman was surprised to find a blank line about his second date. He said that the medical staff at the scene indicated that they would get in touch with them via e-mail.
He told CBC News: “I waited and waited.” “I thought I would receive an email in a few days, but until now, I haven’t heard from them-zero.”
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Ontario Ministry of Health spokesperson Bill Campbell (Bill Campbell) pointed out in an email statement that Ontario’s reservation system requires that the second dose appointment be made at the same time as the first dose appointment.
At the same time, people vaccinated through other channels such as pharmacies, hospitals, pop-ups and mobile clinics “will receive confirmation of their second dose appointment before the four-month interval.”
In Alberta, Alberta Health Services (AHS) spokesperson Tom McMillan said that pharmacies and AHS will contact residents directly before their qualifying date to make an appointment for the next appointment -Eligible Albertans will also be able to make reservations online or over the phone.
In contrast, the Saskatchewan government A tentative timetable has been released Because when can people 45 years and older make an appointment to receive the second dose of treatment, and people 85 years and older are already eligible, and there are some high-risk groups, such as cancer patients.
Many Canadians are “frustrated”
Given that the methods vary from province to province, the reservation system and the scope of vaccination locations, and recommendations about who is eligible for vaccination, it’s no surprise that some Canadians are confused.
Even vaccine expert Tania Watts was trapped in the same boat, not knowing when she will receive the second dose after the first round of AstraZeneca treatment. The reservation site in Ontario told her to check with the pharmacy-but Watts’ pharmacy couldn’t tell her anything.
She said: “A lot of people feel depressed.”
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Watts is even more worried that if people take a few months to get the second injection, and may even go through the loopholes in the system, then as the time of their first vaccination goes by, more people may be right. The virus is positive. Those breakthrough COVID-19 cases are usually mild, but may be more severe for any elderly or immune-compromised person.
She emphasized: “People who don’t get a raise for four months will benefit from the raise.”
“But what I am most worried about is the decline in immunity over time, especially among the oldest people, the infection will become more and more serious.”