First and second paediatric COVID-19 vaccine doses for children aged five to 11 years are now available by walk-in at health unit community vaccination clinics in Simcoe and Muskoka.
Parents and guardians who prefer to schedule an appointment may continue do so through the COVID-19 vaccination portal or by calling the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre at 1-833-943-3900. Additional vaccination options include appointments through the Couchiching Ontario Health Team Clinic, Barrie Family Health Team, some health care providers and family health teams, select pharmacies, the GO-VAXX Bus, and some Indigenous-led clinics.
In keeping with provincial guidance that is informed by the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI), children aged five to 11 years are recommended to receive the paediatric Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. Two doses of the vaccine are recommended with eight weeks between the first and second doses as this results in a stronger and more robust immune response. Optimizing the immune response of children is important for their long-term protection against COVID-19 as Omicron or future variants are likely to continue to circulate beyond the next several months. Other benefits of vaccinating children for COVID-19 include:
- A lower risk of a child becoming infected with COVID-19 and spreading it to others.
- It protects a child from getting very sick from COVID-19 and potential complications, hospitalization and death (although these risks are low, there are both short and long-term health complications from COVID-19 recorded in children).
To support parents and caregivers in making make an informed choice, information about the vaccine is available on the health unit’s website, including how and where to get the vaccine, answers to frequently asked questions, and resources about making vaccination a positive experience.
Anyone who has a scheduled vaccination appointment and is unable to attend because they received their dose in another setting or has become ill, is kindly asked to cancel their appointment by logging into the COVID-19 Vaccination Portal or by calling the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre at 1-833-943-3900.