Vaccinations on hold as city awaits more doses

·3 min read

Ottawa's COVID-19 inoculation program will be on hold for several days next week as health officials await further delivery of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

The Ottawa Hospital will run out of doses on Saturday, after which the vaccination clinic "is expected to be paused and resume operation toward the end of next week," the hospital confirmed to CBC in an emailed statement Friday.

Any remaining doses — the hospital didn't say how many — will be used for long-term care residents "as a priority," and for the health-care workers and other caregivers who were vaccinated last month but require their second doses within the 21-28 day period recommended by the manufacturer.

Because of the supply shortage, "some appointments already pre-booked will have to be rescheduled, and those individuals will be contacted with a new appointment time to ensure they receive their second dose within the timeframe outlined," according to the hospital.

There's no word yet on how many Pfizer-BioNTech doses are expected to arrive in Ottawa next week. The federal government said Friday it expects 280,000 doses a week to arrive in Canada until the end of January, increasing to 360,000 a week in February.

It's not clear when doses of the Moderna vaccine might also arrive in Ottawa.

Supplied by The Ottawa Hospital
Supplied by The Ottawa Hospital

Nursing homes a priority

So far, Ottawa has received 12,675 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. As of Wednesday, the hospital had administered 11,000 doses to about 10,000 people on site.

Residents of five long-term care homes also received vaccinations this week. Residents have been deemed a priority to receive the vaccine because the death rate among those who contract COVID-19 is extremely high.

In a memo on Friday, Ottawa's medical officer of health Dr. Vera Etches and Anthony Di Monte, the city's general manager of emergency and protective services, listed the order in which residents of the remaining long-term homes will be vaccinated.

  • Perley Rideau Veterans' Health Centre (already vaccinated once).

  • Carlingview Manor Long-Term Care Home (already vaccinated once).

  • Peter D. Clark Home (already vaccinated once).

  • St. Patrick's Home of Ottawa (already vaccinated once).

  • Garry J. Armstrong (already vaccinated once).

  • Saint-Louis Residence - Bruyère.

  • Extendicare Medex.

  • Extendicare West End Villa.

  • Extendicare Laurier Manor.

  • The Glebe Centre.

  • Madonna Care Community.

  • Extendicare Starwood 1.

  • Garden Terrace 14.Centre d'Accueil Champlain.

  • Granite Ridge Care Community.

  • Forest Hill.

  • Villa Marconi.

  • Carleton Lodge.

  • Revera Montfort Long-Term Care Home.

  • Osgoode Care Centre.

  • Salvation Army Ottawa Grace Manor.

  • Hillel Lodge.

  • New Orchard Lodge.

  • Revera Longfields Manor Long-Term Care Home.

  • Résidence Élizabeth Bruyère.

  • Manoir Marochel.

  • Sarsfield Colonial Home.

  • Royal Ottawa Place.

However, the city couldn't say when that might start.

"Specific dates cannot be determined at this time given vaccines are received from the province weekly and in amounts that fluctuate week over week," according to the memo. "Distribution planning must also consider inventory requirements for second vaccine doses, which have started to be administered."