The Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU) is now offering Pfizer’s bivalent COVID-19 booster vaccine to everyone aged 12 and up. Bivalent vaccines protect against the original COVID-19 as well as the Omicron subvariants. The booster is only available to those that already have their first two vaccine doses. Moderna’s bivalent booster is still only available to those aged 18 and over.
The booster can be administered as soon as three months after your last vaccine dose, but the EOHU recommends residents get it around six months for maximum coverage. Those who are 65 years and older, at high risk for severe COVID-19 illness, or immunocompromised are encouraged to get the booster at three months.
“Now that we have access to two different kinds of bivalent COVID-19 booster vaccines, my advice to the public is to get the first one that is available to you,” said Dr. Paul Roumeliotis, Medical Officer of Health at the EOHU. « As we head into the winter months and the level of respiratory illnesses like COVID-19 is expected to increase, the bivalent vaccine will provide you with an added layer of protection against the currently circulating Omicron subvariants and help prevent severe disease if you do get infected with COVID-19.”
The EOHU would also like to encourage the community to get their flu shots as soon as possible. The flu vaccine will be available starting November 1 for everyone aged six months and older and has been approved for use alongside the COVID-19 vaccine. With the presence of COVID-19 in the community, getting your flu vaccine is more important now than ever.
The bivalent booster and flu shot will be available through healthcare providers, community health centres, and participating pharmacies. Visit http://www.EOHU.ca to learn how you can book an appointment.