Updated Information on COVID-19 Vaccinations

In an effort to answer questions about COVID-19 vaccinations, my office has compiled the following update. Please note that information is evolving daily, and we will do our best to provide regular updates. This post has been recently updated, and information is current as of April 19, 2021. 

If you have additional questions about how to book a vaccination appointment or you require assistance booking an appointment, please call the Provincial Vaccine Information Line at 1-888-999-6488 (TTY 1-866-797-0007).

Roles and responsibilities in COVID-19 vaccine rollout 

When it comes to COVID-19 vaccines, we are embarking on the largest immunization effort in our country’s history. Each level of government has a role to play: 

  • The Government of Canada is responsible for obtaining the supply of COVID-19 vaccines.  
  • The Government of Ontario (the Province) is responsible for setting the overall framework for vaccine distribution, and allocating vaccines across the Province. This includes: 
    • Setting the priority categories that determine who can access a vaccine and when 
    • Creating a province-wide registration system and hotline 
    • Distributing vaccine supply to local Public Health Units across Ontario
  • The City of Toronto and Toronto Public Health are supporting the administration of the vaccine, in accordance with the Province’s framework
  • Hospitals, Ontario Health teams, and other health care sector partners are assisting with the delivery and administration of vaccines. As supply increases, pharmacists and family doctors will also be able to provide vaccines to Torontonians 

Who is currently eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine in Toronto? 

As noted above, it is up to the Province of Ontario to determine which people receive the vaccine first. The Provincial government has determined the following people are currently eligible to book their vaccination appointments: 

  • Residents, staff, and essential caregivers in long term care homes and retirement homes 
  • Alternative level of care patients in hospitals who have a confirmed admission to a long-term care home, retirement home, or other congregate care home for seniors
  • Priority health care workers (including frontline emergency responders) 
  • Indigenous adults (age 16 and above) 
  • People living in high-risk congregate settings, including shelters 
  • Adult recipients of chronic home care services
  • People in Toronto who are 60 years of age and above, or will be this year (born in 1961 or earlier)
  • People in Toronto who are 50 years of age and above (born in 1971 or earlier), AND live in a designated-COVID-19 hot-spot postal code area
  • Beginning Tuesday, April 20, select pharmacies in Toronto are administering AstraZeneca vaccines for people who are 40 years of age and above (or will be this year), as part of the Ontario Government’s Pharmacy Program

Torontonians that fall under the above categories are currently eligible to book appointments to receive a vaccine. More information on how to book is below. 

The Province recently provided details on which groups of people will be eligible in upcoming stages of the vaccine rollout. You can learn more by visiting: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/ontarios-covid-19-vaccination-plan


How to book a vaccine appointment if you are eligible: 

If you are 60 years of age or older (born in 1961 or earlier) or

If you are 50 years of age or older (born in 1971 or earlier) AND live in a designated-COVID-19 hot-spot postal code area (beginning at 8 am Friday, April 9)

A list of postal code areas that have been identified by the Province as COVID-19 hot-spot areas and are prioritized for vaccination can be found by clicking here

To book an appointment, visit: https://www.toronto.ca/home/covid-19/

By clicking on the blue "Register" icon, you will be taken to the Province's registration system page to book an appointment. 

You can also book a vaccination appointment by calling the Provincial Vaccine Information Line at 1-888-999-6488 (TTY 1-866-797-0007)

This system allows eligible people to book an appointment at one of Toronto's immunization clinics. The following nine City-run immunization clinics are currently open: 

  1. Metro Toronto Convention Centre, 255 Front St. W.
  2. Scarborough Town Centre, 300 Borough Dr.
  3. Toronto Congress Centre, 650 Dixon Rd.
  4. Malvern Community Recreation Centre, 30 Sewells Rd.
  5. Mitchell Field Community Centre, 89 Church Ave.
  6. The Hangar, 75 Carl Hall Rd. 
  7. Cloverdale Mall, 250 The East Mall
  8. North Toronto Memorial Community Centre, 200 Eglinton Ave. W.
  9. Carmine Stefano Community Centre, 3100 Weston Rd.

Through the same registration system, people can an appointment at the following immunization clinic, which is operated by our health partners: 

  1. Thorncliffe Park Community Hub at East York Town Centre

Residents will need to provide their provincial health card number, birthdate, postal code and email and/or mobile phone number. 

At the time of booking, residents will schedule their first vaccination appointment and an appointment to receive their second dose. 

The online registration system allows for a trusted person to book your vaccination appointments on your behalf. To book your appointments, the person booking on your behalf will need your:
• Government of Ontario photo health card information
• Birthdate
• Postal code
• Email address and/or phone number

If you have further questions about the booking process, please call the Provincial Vaccine Information Line at 1-888-999-6488 (TTY 1-866-797-0007)

People who meet the above eligibility criteria may decide instead to book an appointment for a COVID vaccination at a hospital or health care clinic, by visiting the online registration system developed by the health care sector, at: www.vaccineto.ca or calling the call centre (1-888-385-1910)

People should only book an appointment at one vaccination clinic. If you book appointments at multiple clinics, all your bookings may be cancelled.

If you have booked an appointment at a hospital clinic but would now like to switch it to a mass immunization clinic, please cancel your first appointment. You will then have to register through the City’s webpage to schedule an appointment at a City-run clinic. 

 Please note that vaccinations at all clinics are by appointment only (no walk-ins). 

For people 40 years of age and older who want to participate in the Province's Pharmacy AstraZeneca Program: 

Beginning Tuesday, April 20, select pharmacies in Toronto are administering AstraZeneca vaccines for people who are 40 years of age and above (or will be this year), as part of the Ontario Government’s Pharmacy Program

You must have an appointment to get vaccinated at a participating Pharmacy. Walk-ins will not be accepted.

To book an appointment, contact the Pharmacy directly. To find a participating Pharmacy near you, you can use the Province’s webpage: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/vaccine-locations

On this page you will find a list of participating Pharmacies in your area with instructions how to book an appointment at each  one. 

 

For Priority health care workers, adults receiving chronic home care, Indigenous adults, and some people with chronic or high-risk medical conditions: 

Some hospital and health care sector clinics are currently providing vaccinations for people who are health care workers, adults who are receiving chronic home care, and Indigenous adults, as well as some adults who have chronic or high-risk medical conditions. These people can book an appointment for a COVID vaccination at a hospital or health care clinic by visiting the online registration system developed by the health care sector, at: www.vaccineto.ca or calling the call centre (1-888-385-1910)

If you cannot leave your home to get a vaccine: 

  • If you are a homebound person (can't leave your home to receive health care or other services) and are currently receiving home care through a Primary Care Provider, Family Health Team, Home or Community Care or Community Support Services or Agencies, please contact your provider to learn whether they are able to offer in-home vaccination. Many health teams are beginning to organize or being supported to offer in-home vaccination and will begin to reach out to their patients and/or clients in the coming weeks. If your provider is not able to offer at-home vaccination, they will place your name onto a list for at-home vaccination.
  • If you are a homebound person who does not have a Primary Care Provider, Family Health Team, Home or Community Care or Community Support Services, please contact the Toronto Seniors Helpline. The Toronto Seniors Helpline will be available to support homebound people who are 18-65 years old, as well as seniors. They can be contacted at 416-217-2077 or by web chat following instruction at https://torontoseniorshelpline.ca/web-chat/

Toronto’s Immunization Task Force is continuing to work with our healthcare partners, including the Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs), hospitals, and family physicians to provide options for people who cannot leave their homes. When we have more information, we will share it. 

City of Toronto's COVID-19 Vaccination Planning

The City of Toronto has now opened all nine City-run immunization clinics, and a tenth mass immunization clinic operated by our partners at the East Toronto Health Partners Ontario Health Team and Michael Garron Hospital. The following immunization clinics are currently open: 

  1. Metro Toronto Convention Centre, 255 Front St. W.
  2. Scarborough Town Centre, 300 Borough Dr.
  3. Toronto Congress Centre, 650 Dixon Rd.
  4. Malvern Community Recreation Centre, 30 Sewells Rd.
  5. Mitchell Field Community Centre, 89 Church Ave.
  6. The Hangar, 75 Carl Hall Rd. 
  7. Cloverdale Mall, 250 The East Mall
  8. North Toronto Memorial Community Centre, 200 Eglinton Ave. W.
  9. Carmine Stefano Community Centre, 3100 Weston Rd.

Through the same registration system, people can an appointment at the following immunization clinic, which is operated by our health partners: 

  1. Thorncliffe Park Community Hub at East York Town Centre (operated by East Toronto Health Partners Ontario Health Team and Michael Garron Hospital)

As available vaccine supply increases, we can continue to scale up. Once vaccine supply permits, the City has plans in place to increase the number of vaccines administered each month at our mass immunization clinics from 500,000 to nearly 1 million doses. You can find more details on these plans here

The mass immunization clinics are just one piece of the immunization plan for Toronto – there will be many and varied opportunities for vaccination for all residents, once the supply of vaccine is increased. Other clinics will continue to be operated by hospitals, community partners, mobile clinic operations, and healthcare partners. At this time, the plan for clinics will include as vaccine supply increases: 

  • 49 planned vaccination clinics to be operated by hospitals and Ontario Health Teams 
  • 46 planned vaccination clinics to be operated by community health centres
  • 249 pharmacy clinics that will begin to operate with provincial direction

Alongside our hospital, community, and health care partners, Toronto is undertaking the largest immunization campaign in our country's history. It's a Team Toronto effort designed to ensure that every resident in every corner of our city can access the vaccine.

Why do I have to wait to get a vaccine? 

Toronto Public Health, hospitals, and healthcare partners receive vaccine supply from the Province of Ontario. It is important to note that vaccine supply is still limited. If vaccine supply changes, plans and operations for vaccinations are subject to change. Opportunities for more people to be vaccinated will be announced as vaccine supply increases. 

As the largest city in Canada with an expansive health care sector, Toronto has a large number of people that fall under the Province’s Phase 1 priority for vaccination. Toronto Public Health has estimated that there are 325,000 people who qualify as top priority under Phase 1 (including frontline health care workers) but as of early March, Toronto had only received approx. 200,000 doses. 

This means that it will continue to take time before all the Priority Groups in Phase 1 are all able to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, and we can continue to move forward to other Phases in the Province’s framework. 

As vaccine supply increases, people will be able to get vaccinated at an increasing number of locations, including pharmacies, doctor's offices, and community health clinics. 

You can learn more about who is eligible in each Phase of the Province’s framework by visiting: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/covid-19-vaccines-ontario

If you have questions regarding the Provincial framework, or the priority Phases for vaccinations, you may wish to contact the office of your local Member of Provincial Parliament (MPP).


How do I learn more about the COVID-19 vaccines? 

As information about the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccination plans continues to evolve, we encourage you to regularly check credible sources for updates, including the following: 

The Federal Government’s webpage on COVID-19 vaccines 

The Province of Ontario’s webpage on COVID-19 vaccines 

The City of Toronto’s webpage on COVID-19 vaccines