As of tomorrow, Tuesday, February 16, seven health care partners and the City of Toronto will have offered COVID-19 immunization clinics to administer the second dose of vaccine at all 87 long-term care homes in Toronto. This vaccination milestone, protecting some of the city’s most vulnerable residents, represents a significant achievement in the City’s ongoing response to the pandemic.
As of Sunday, February 14 at 11 a.m., more than 10,065 residents and 3,151 staff and essential caregivers have been vaccinated with the second dose of the Moderna vaccine on-site in Toronto long-term care homes. In addition, staff and essential caregivers have attended hospital clinics to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, with many having now received the second dose.
“This is a major milestone in our fight against COVID-19. I want to thank all those involved in this immunization effort,” saidMayor John Tory. This work is protecting our most vulnerable residents and we are continuing to get ready to support the provincial and federal governments in the larger vaccine rollout across Toronto.”
The City thanks its health care partners, Humber River Hospital, University Health Network, Unity Health Network, North York General Hospital, Michael Garron Hospital, Scarborough Health Network and Sunnybrook Hospital, for their rapid response to this need in the community. The City also acknowledges the hard work of the long-term care homes who worked to ensure this important protection was implemented for their staff and residents.
“I want to thank our health care partners for taking a leadership role and collaborating with us to ensure that our most vulnerable residents were protected through timely vaccination,” said Dr. Eileen de Villa, Medical Officer of Health. “While we await further news about vaccine supply and distribution from our federal and provincial partners, I urge residents to stay home except for essential reasons to help stop virus spread, and to practice the steps of self-protection if you must go out. We know that these practices work, which is why I continue to encourage residents to follow these steps to protect themselves and save lives: watch your distance, wear your mask, wash your hands and stay at home if you are feeling sick,” said Dr. de Villa.
The City directly operates 10 of the 87 long-term care homes in Toronto: Bendale Acres, Carefree Lodge, Castleview Wychwood Towers, Cummer Lodge, Fudger House, Kipling Acres, Lakeshore Lodge, Seven Oaks, True Davidson Acres and Wesburn Manor. Vaccination of the residents in City long-term care homes began on December 31, 2020. More than 90 per cent of residents in City long-term care homes have now received both doses of vaccine. Immunization clinics will continue in City-operated homes to enable more residents, staff members and essential caregivers to voluntarily receive the vaccine.
The City’s Immunization Task Force remains committed to ensuring the most vulnerable residents of the city are vaccinated in the safest and most efficient means possible, working with the Province of Ontario and hospital partners to achieve this goal. Earlier this year, the Province requested Toronto Public Health and other regional health units to support initial vaccination of all residents, health care workers and essential caregivers in long-term care homes in their respective jurisdiction by January 21. Clinics administering this first dose of vaccine were completed in all Toronto long-term care homes by January 15.
The Government of Canada is responsible for obtaining the supply of COVID-19 vaccines; the Province has responsibility for distributing the vaccines and administering them to priority groups established under the Province’s framework; and the City of Toronto is responsible for supporting the administration of the vaccine in accordance with provincial prioritization and scheduling frameworks as vaccines are provided by the Province.
As Toronto awaits the rollout of mass immunization, to reduce and eliminate the transmission of COVID-19, protect the healthcare system and save lives, the City continues to urge all residents to stay home as much as possible to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Please review the City’s simple “Dos” and “Don’ts” guide for recommended and mandatory public health measures. The guide explains what is, and what is not, permitted under the provincial Lockdown Regulation.