NACI Update Guidelines in Light of Omicron – .

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NACI Update Guidelines in Light of Omicron – .


OTTAWA – The National Advisory Committee on Immunization is expected to release new guidance this morning on the use of COVID-19 vaccine boosters as public health grapples with the threat of the Omicron variant.

The new variant was revealed at the end of last week and triggered stricter border measures around the world as the World Health Organization warns that the high number of mutations could indicate that it is more transmissible than the previous strains.

The government has made an urgent request to the advisory committee for new guidance on eligibility criteria for recalls to protect Canadians from the new version of the virus.

“We know that Canadians are increasingly wondering if they should Ǫ receive recalls, and this issue is obviously more important now with the new variant,” said Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos in a statement. press conference Tuesday.

“We are explicitly asking NACI to quickly come up with a revised view on where, how and to whom these reminders should be administered. “

It was at the same press conference that ministers announced a series of strict new testing and isolation measures for travelers entering Canada as part of an effort to ensure no one imports. unintentionally a case of the new variant in Canada. The government has also banned entry to foreign nationals who have recently passed through 10 African countries.

Yet cases of Omicron have already arisen across the country. Although most involve recent travel, one case, reported in Alberta, involved home transmission.

On November 19, the advisory committee suggested that there was no evidence to date of decreased protection against serious illnesses caused by COVID-19 in the fully vaccinated general population.

Emerging evidence suggests that if the vaccine becomes less effective at preventing infection over time, the protection against serious illness and death appears to be more durable.

The advisory committee strongly recommended boosters for people who are immunocompromised, living in long-term care facilities and people over 80 years of age.

The committee also recommended that boosters could be offered to several other groups, including people over the age of 70, people who have received a full set of Oxford-AstraZeneca or Janssen vaccines, people from First Nations communities, Inuit and Métis or from them, and front-line health workers.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Wednesday that when it comes to boosters, the priority is to follow NACI’s advice on who should get them and when, in light of the Omicron variant.

The vaccine supply will not be a problem, he said.

“We have a lot of booster shots in Canada, we’re getting more in the new year. We are doing well in terms of quantity. The problem is, what is the best recommendation for people to get these recalls and when, ”he said. .

Despite NACI’s advice to date, many provinces have implemented their own COVID-19 recall strategies and, in some cases, have committed to offering them to any adult who wishes in the coming weeks.

NACI officials are expected to hold a press conference at 11 a.m. ET.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on December 3, 2021

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