OTTAWA – Starting today, (April 7), individuals aged 60 and older are eligible to book a fourth dose booster appointment if the recommended interval of five months (140 days) has passed since their third dose.
First Nation, Inuit and Métis individuals and their household members aged 18 and over are also eligible.
“The goal of this expanded eligibility is to provide individuals at higher-risk of illness from COVID-19 with an extra layer of protection,” Ottawa Public Health (OPH) released in a statement today. “This follows recent guidance from the National Advisory Council on Immunization, and aligns with the provincial announcement on expanded fourth dose eligibility.”
Older adults are at greater risk of severe disease, complications, and hospitalizations from COVID-19.
“With the current surge of COVID-19 in Ottawa and across the province, OPH highly recommends all eligible adults receive a fourth dose as soon as possible,” OPH staff said.
Individuals who meet the eligibility criteria can book their fourth dose through the COVID-19 vaccination portal, by calling the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre at 1-833-943-3900 or by checking local pharmacies to find locations that provide fourth doses near you. Residents are encouraged to make an appointment as drop-in availability will be limited at community vaccine clinics. Some primary care physicians are also providing booster doses.
“It’s not too late if you still need your first, second, or third dose,” OPH said. “OPH encourages all residents to get vaccinated as soon as they can, and to receive further doses as soon as they are eligible to ensure maximum protection against COVID-19.”
OPH has offered fourth doses of the COVID-19 vaccine since December 2021 to high-risk populations including older adults in long-term care homes, retirement homes, and other congregate care settings. These fourth doses have helped to prevent serious disease, complications, hospitalizations and death during the Omicron wave.
To reduce transmission of COVID-19, OPH continues to highly recommend individuals wear a mask indoors especially when physical distancing may not be possible or proves to be challenging in crowded areas. If you become unwell or have any symptoms, stay home. Do not go to work or school when you are sick and have a plan in the event you or someone in your household need to isolate.
Visit OttawaPublicHealth.ca/COVID19 to learn more about COVID-19, how you can protect yourself and others and what to do if you suspect you may be infected with the virus.