The first round of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered in every long-term care home across Ontario.
On Thursday, the provincial government said that 62,000 long-term care residents have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and more than 34,000 residents have received their second dose.
“It is critically important to vaccinate, and provide an extra layer of protection, for the residents in our long-term care homes and those who care for them,” said Premier Doug Ford in a statement.
“But due to a shortage of supply and unpredictable deliveries, meeting our goals has been a challenge. Thanks to the well-oiled machine here in Ontario, led by General Hillier and his team, we have made incredible progress in our vaccine rollout, offering our seniors and their families peace of mind during this difficult period.”
According to the province, as the administration of second doses continues, Ontario will maintain the recommended interval of 21 to 27 days for residents who received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.
“This milestone marks an important step towards the immunization of our most vulnerable,” said Dr. Merrilee Fullerton, Minister of Long-Term Care. “As we await details and timelines on further shipments from the federal government, I remain grateful for the coordinated efforts of all of our healthcare partners for quickly delivering the available vaccines to our loved ones.”
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ontario has invested $1.38 billion to ensure that long-term care homes have the resources to confront the virus.
There is also an ongoing independent commission to investigate Ontario’s long-term care homes, which were exposed by the Canadian Armed Forces to not follow health protocols and treat residents with proper care.