COVID-19 Updates - December 16, 2021
I know it’s been a tough two years. We’re all worn down by this pandemic. Unfortunately, despite all our collective success with the vaccination campaign, the emergence of the highly transmissible Omicron variant has shown that this virus is not done with us yet.
However, we have the tools, the knowledge, and the Team Toronto model to confront this moment.
Reduce your contacts this holiday season. Stay home if you have symptoms. Wear your mask. Most importantly, vaccination works. Whether it’s the first, second, or third dose that you’re eligible for, book your appointment without delay, and help your loved ones to do the same. Vaccines are very effective at protecting us against serious illness, hospitalization, and death.
In the time – less than three weeks – since Omicron was designated as a variant of concern, our Team Toronto partners including Toronto Public Health have been undertaking a war-time mobilization to massively scale up vaccine clinic capacity. More appointments are becoming available every day, along with pop-up and mobile clinic options meeting people in the communities where they work, shop, and go to school.
I know we can do this, Toronto. We’ve done the hard work and overcome many challenges to crush past waves of COVID-19. This time we have more knowledge and more vaccine supply than ever before.
In this Edition
- Pubic Health Updates
- Vax The Holidays
- Pop-Up COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics in Ward 10
1. Public Health Updates
On Wednesday, the Province of Ontario announced a number of changes including:
- All individuals aged 18+ will be eligible for a vaccine booster beginning on Monday, December 20.
- People aged 50+ who have already booked their booster can re-book for an earlier date, as little as 3 months after their second dose.
- Free take-home rapid antigen tests will be made more widely available in a variety of settings.
- Ontario is reducing capacity limits by 50% on indoor venues with a usual capacity of 1,000 people or more, effective on Saturday.
Expanding third dose capacity at City-run clinics
The City is increasing capacity at the five City-operated immunization clinics by almost double through expanded clinic hours, with the potential to administer 41,000 doses weekly.
New appointments will be gradually added as capacity expands, and are available through the provincial vaccine booking system by clicking the blue button on toronto.ca/covid-19 or calling 1-833-943-3900.
Expanding Team Toronto clinic options
Team Toronto, with the largest network of vaccination clinics in Ontario, is also looking at ways to increase capacity through new locations and expanded operations. The team is immediately pursuing additional pharmacies to join the 450 pharmacies currently administering COVID-19 vaccines. The neighbourhood locations work alongside City-run clinics, hospitals, doctors’ offices and community clinics offering COVID-19 vaccines across Toronto. Many hospital clinics and primary care physicians are carrying out operations with an increased focus on COVID-19 vaccination.
Reaching out to residents eligible for third doses
This past Friday, VaxTO reached out to 500,000 Torontonians through interactive broadcast voice messages that enabled more than 5,500 people to transfer to the provincial call centre to book an appointment. Outreach was focused on neighbourhoods where vaccination uptake has been historically below the city’s overall average.
This week, Team Toronto continued to connect residents with opportunities and resources to encourage vaccination. About 55,000 text messages were sent Monday to encourage eligible residents to book their third-dose appointment. The campaign also continues to reach out to all eligible first-dose recipients to encourage them to get their second dose.
Increasing community outreach
The City is distributing $6 million in additional funding among 155 community agencies and a network of 410 neighbourhood ambassadors to bring vaccine information to every corner of Toronto. This community outreach is focusing on equity-seeking communities and priority areas identified by Toronto Public Health as having lagging vaccination rates.
2. Vax The Holidays
It’s time to Vax The Holidays. We’re bringing vaccines to where people are at, and it’s easy to get your first, second, or third dose in your community this weekend.
- Lawrence Allen Centre
- Stockyards Village
- Yonge Sheppard Centre
Today and Friday, 1-8 pm; Saturday 11 am to 6 pm.
- Broadlands Community Centre – Thursday, December 16, 4 to 8 p.m.
- Canoe Landing Community Centre – Thursday, December 16, 4 to 8 p.m.
- Elmbank Community Centre – Sunday, December 19, 12:30 to 6:30 p.m.
- Oriole Community Centre – Thursday, December 16, 1:30 to 5:30 p.m.
- St. Alban’s Club – Thursday, December 16, 3 to 7 p.m.
- Thistletown Community Centre – Saturday, December 18, 1 to 5 p.m.
In addition, children aged five to 11 can get vaccinated at fixed clinic sites run by the City, hospitals, Ontario Health teams, community health centres, at more than 110 primary care providers and pediatricians, and 240 pharmacies across the city. As well, 15 COVID-19 vaccine clinics are operating December 16, 17 and 18 at Toronto District School Board and Toronto Catholic District School Board locations. More vaccination clinic information is available on the City’s COVID-19: Children & Vaccines webpage.
3. Pop-Up COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics in Ward 10
Scadding Court Community Centre
707 Dundas Street West
Wednesday, December 22
And every Wednesday in January
Open to residents born in 2009 or older
5 pm - 7 pm
Scadding Court Kids Clinic
Monday, December 20th, 12:30 - 7pm
Kids aged 5-11
View flyer for details
Vaccine Clinic Locator
The online Vaccine Clinic Locator and interactive map is updated daily with the latest information on pop-up clinic locations in Ward 10 and across Toronto.