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First dose COVID-19 vaccines for retirement home residents wrapping up in Ottawa

Officials say it will still be "several months" before vaccines are available to the general public.
2020-12-15 COVID-19 pfizer vaccine the ottawa hospital
Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at The Ottawa Hospital, December 15, 2020. Photo/ The Ottawa Hospital

The City of Ottawa's healthcare leaders are thanking local vaccination teams, as they finish serving up the first round of COVID-19 vaccine doses at retirement homes.

As of Tuesday, February 23, eligible residents at all 82 retirement homes in Ottawa have at least been offered to get their first dose of a novel coronavirus vaccine.

"This milestone has been reached through the efforts of Mobile Vaccination Teams, comprised of staff from the Ottawa Paramedic Service, Ottawa Public Health, The Ottawa Hospital, the Queensway-Carleton Hospital, Ottawa Inner City Health, community physicians and the retirement facilities," reads a city memo from Emergency and Protective Services General Manager Anthony Di Monte and Medical Officer of Health Dr. Vera Etches. "This was truly an inspiring team effort.

Vaccinations began with 37 high-risk homes, which are homes with a memory care unit, homes that are co-located with a long-term care facility, or homes identified as vulnerable due to other available health data, on February 7. 

The memo from Di Monte and Dr. Etches says completion of first dose offers of vaccines at all of Ottawa’s retirement homes is an important milestone, but it will be several months until COVID-19 vaccines are available to the general public. 

The city is reminding residents, it is essential to continue practicing public health measures to help reduce the transmission of COVID-19 in the community.

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