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Ontario has yet to decide what to do about second doses for those who have received their first injection of AstraZeneca – even as the expiration date approaches for part of that vaccine supply.
Health Minister Christine Elliott has said she doesn’t want to waste a single dose of the vaccine, but is still waiting for advice from the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI).
“I know that a lot of people are very worried about this, that they may have received the AstraZeneca injection as their first dose – I did it myself – and that they are wondering what will be theirs. second dose and how they will be notified, ”Elliott said Monday. “We are waiting for this information to arrive, but we know that the second doses are not expected for people until the end of June, so there is still time to come to a conclusion on this from our medical experts.
“But for people who may have received their first dose of vaccine in a pop-up clinic or elsewhere, they are in the system, they are in the COVax system… When their turn comes for a second dose, they will be notified well in advance of when they will get their second dose and what that dose will be, what the vaccine will be, ”she said.
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Dr. David Williams, Chief Medical Officer of Ontario, has ordered a halt in the use of AstraZeneca as the first dose due to concerns about the risk of vaccine-induced blood clots.
Ontario will not allow the use of any expired vaccines, including AstraZeneca, he said.
Associate Medical Officer of Health Dr. Barbara Yaffe has confirmed 14 cases of AstraZeneca vaccine-related blood clots in Ontario, 10 of which met the criteria for vaccine-induced thrombotic thrombocytopenia (VITT).
“I want to take this opportunity to reiterate that those who received their first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine did what was necessary to prevent the disease and protect their families, loved ones and communities,” said Yaffe.
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Ontario is looking to other jurisdictions to determine the implications of a second dose of AstraZeneca, Pfizer or Moderna.
The UK experience so far shows a “much, much, much lower” risk of blood clots with a second dose of AstraZeneca, Elliott said.