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The latest information on COVID-19 vaccination plans and progress on Vancouver Island
As BC's vaccination effort marches toward a goal of reaching 70% of the population, we are keeping track of the numbers and any significant updates. This page will be kept up to date and new information will be added over time, so please check back for the most current vaccination numbers and other COVID-19 information.
We have written recently about BC's decision not to collect race-based data; how and when herd immunity might happen on Vancouver Island; how Vancouver Island is doing in its fight against the virus; and what the vaccine rollout should look like. We will continue to update this page with the latest information and stories.
BC health officials have unveiled a comprehensive immunization plan for the next nine months in which they expect 4.3 million people across the province will be able to receive a COVID-19 vaccine by the end of September 2021.
A whopping 7.4 million doses of vaccine will be required to complete the largest mass immunization project the province has ever undertaken.
In this four-phase plan, the province takes an age-based approach to deciding who gets vaccinated and when, rather than including priority groups. Children aged 17 and under will not be eligible to get vaccinated in the next nine months.
The one exemption is in Phase 3 (April to June), people aged 16 to 69 years old who are designated as "clinically extremely vulnerable"—including organ transplant recipients, those who have specific cancers, severe respiratory illnesses, and rare diseases—will be eligible to receive a vaccine.
In late February, health officials will announce how BC residents can pre-register, online or over the phone, to get immunized. People will be able to pre-register two to four weeks before they're eligible.
Between April and September, Vancouver Island Health Authority is expected to vaccinate 16,900 people every day. The province says they will need 120 workers administering vaccines to reach this target.
Immunization clinics will be set up in large centres, including school gymnasiums, arenas, conventional centres, and community halls, across 172 communities in BC.
Mobile clinics in vehicles will also be delivering vaccines to remote communities and to vulnerable people who are housebound.
Everyone who gets vaccinated will get a paper copy of their immunization record, and also be able to sign up for the Provincial Health Gateway through which they can access their digital records.
Even if all goes according to plan with no further delays, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says BC most likely won't be able to return to normal levels of social interaction until the fall.
December 2020-February 2021
February to March 2021
April to June 2021
People aged 16 to 69 years old deemed “clinically extremely vulnerable”. These include:
April to May 2021
May to July 2021
July to September 2021
NOTE: Once more vaccines, like AstraZeneca and Janssen, are approved, the province’s immunization plan may be amended to expedite vaccines for people aged 18 to 64 who are classified as essential front-line workers in specific industries. These groups may then be prioritized to get vaccinated between April and June.
The provincial government has promised detailed breakdowns of how many vaccines will be delivered by each health authority starting Wednesday, Jan 20.
Last week, the province received 46,467 doses of vaccine, including 28,275 doses of the Pfizer vaccine and 18,400 doses of the Moderna vaccine.
This week, BC is expecting 24,325 more doses of Pfizer and 2,400 doses of Moderna.
However, deliveries to BC will slow down over the next two weeks due to Pfizer's decision to temporarily reduce shipments to Canada.
Despite the delay, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says the province will still be on track to vaccinate most of the province's at-risk population by March and start general population immunization in April.
So far, 80% of all long term care home staff members in the Lower Mainland have been vaccinated. The immunization rollout has been more challenging in the Island, Interior, and Northern health authorities where the care homes are spread further apart and where fewer doses were delivered.
Dr. Henry says the goal is to immunize all LTC and assisted living staff members in BC by next week.
With files from Brishti Basu and Jimmy Thomson