Ontario Outlines Approach for Phase Two of COVID-19 Vaccines

Published on January 13, 2021

As we continue to vaccinate our most vulnerable and those at greatest risk in Phase One of Ontario’s vaccination program, the government is keeping the momentum going by beginning Phase Two as early as March 2021 to overlap with the completion of Phase One, as soon as sufficient vaccines are available from the federal government.

Vaccination of residents, staff and essential caregivers of LTC homes has begun in many parts of the province, with the goal of having the first dose administered in all homes no later than February 15, 2021. Vaccination of all staff and residents in LTC in the four regions with the highest rates of transmission (Toronto, Peel, York, and Windsor-Essex) is expected to be completed by January 21.

The government is preparing to immunize up to 8.5 million people before the end of Phase Two, if vaccines are available, including:  

  • Older adults, beginning with those 80 years of age and older and decreasing in five-year increments over the course of the vaccine rollout;  
  • Individuals living and working in high-risk congregate settings; 
  • Frontline essential workers (e.g., first responders, teachers, food processing industry); 
  • Individuals with high-risk chronic conditions and their caregivers.

As part of Phase Two, Ontario is ramping up to distribute vaccines, as soon as we receive them from the federal government, by expanding which health care workers are able to administer COVID-19 vaccines, who can register through Ontario’s Matching Portal. 

  • Eligible health care workers who will be able to administer the COVID-19 vaccines will include: Nurse practitioners, registered nurses and registered practical nurses; and pharmacists, pharmacy students, interns and pharmacy technicians.  

We are also expanding the number of sites where Phase Two populations can receive a vaccine.  

  • Phase Two vaccination sites will include: municipally run vaccination sites, hospital sites, mobile vaccination sites, pharmacies, clinics, primary care settings and community locations such as community health centres and aboriginal health access centres. 

Key Achievements to Date (as of 8:00 p.m., January 12th):  

  • administered over 144,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccines across the province  
  • Over 8,000 Ontarians are fully immunized after receiving both doses 
  • Over 45,000 health care workers in LTC and retirement homes have received their first dose 
  • Over 67,000 health care workers have received their first dose 
  • Over 13,000 LTC and retirement home residents have received their first dose 

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