B.C. bumps up vaccine bookings for people 80 and older ahead of schedule
Starting Monday at noon, residents aged 84 or older can call to book an appointment
Health officials in B.C. say starting Monday at noon, people in the province 84 years of age or older can begin booking COVID-19 vaccinations.
In a release, the province says it is now a week ahead of its vaccine booking schedule and will have people in the 80 to 84 age range call for bookings as the week progresses.
Those born in 1937 are eligible to call in at noon on Monday.
The province has laid out this week's booking schedule as follows, with a new age groups becoming eligible each day:
- Seniors aged 84 and above are eligible to call starting at noon Monday.
- Seniors aged 83 and above are eligible to call starting at noon Tuesday.
- Seniors aged 82 and above are eligible to call starting at noon Wednesday.
- Seniors aged 81 and above are eligible to call starting at noon Thursday.
- Seniors aged 80 and above are eligible to call starting at noon Friday.
Those born in 1936 or earlier and Indigenous people born in 1956 or earlier can continue to call anytime to book an appointment.
Each health authority has its own number to dial, which is listed here.
•Monday: 84+ (1937 or earlier)<br>•Tuesday: 83+ (1938 or earlier)<br>•Wednesday: 82+ (1939 or earlier)<br>•Thursday: 81+ (1940 or earlier)<br>•Friday: 80+ (1941 or earlier)<br> <br>Please only call if it’s your turn! Learn more: <a href="https://t.co/Q3MCaiLLyP">https://t.co/Q3MCaiLLyP</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/COVIDbc?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#COVIDbc</a> (3/3)—@BCGovNews
One difference to the provincial schedule is in the Northern Health region where Indigenous people 65 and older, as well as those born in or before 1941 were already able to begin booking their appointments last week.
Clinics also begin in Prince Rupert and Port Edward where all adults are being immunized, regardless of age, due to stubbornly high infection rates in that northwestern B.C. region.
Call centres for each health authority are open daily from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. PT..
Officials estimate 105,000 seniors in the province between the ages of 80 and 84 have not been vaccinated. The province says the staggered rollout of eligibility for different ages in the cohort will help reduce wait times.
The Ministry of Health asks that only one designated family member or support person call to book appointments and for all people to only call when they are scheduled to do so.
Sunday, Health Minister Adrian Dix told CBC News that despite initial problems with phone booking systems for COVID-19 vaccines, the province is now ahead of schedule when it comes to making appointment for those who are currently eligible.
Earlier this week, the province accelerated the booking schedule for people aged 85 and older.
Online booking system coming
Dix also promised an online system will be available across the province soon.
"We are putting an online platform together for everyone in B.C.," he said on Sunday. "That is going to be put in place for the 75 to 79 category so that will be in a week or so."
Dix says B.C. has now vaccinated about half of everyone in the over 90 age category.
The province aims to have all British Columbians 18 and older vaccinated by July 1.
Health authorities booked 17,210 appointments for COVID-19 vaccines today and 85,904 this week. <br>Each health authority’s total for today (and this week) are:<br><br>VIHA - 4,468 (14,325)<br>FHA - 5,148 (32,588)<br>IHA - 3,214 (14,368)<br>VCH - 2,434 (18,245)<br>NHA - 1,946 (6,378)—@adriandix