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COVID-19 Vaccine Prioritization

The Ministry of Health, through the guidance of the provincial COVID-19 Vaccine Task Force, directs allocation of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Update: The COVID-19 Vaccine Prioritization Advisory Committee has voluntarily disbanded and will reconvene should the need arise.

 

On April 29, 2021, the Ministry of Health released an update to Ontario’s COVID-19 vaccination plan. The updated plan outlined a Phase 2 schedule for COVID-19 vaccine booking eligibility and provided additional clarity regarding eligible groups. Given this additional direction, the need for regional prioritization has waned.


Read the May 5, 2021 update from the Vaccine Prioritization Advisory Committee. This will be the final memo from the committee.

 

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COVID-19 Vaccine Prioritization Advisory Committee

Please note: The COVID-19 Vaccine Prioritization Advisory Committee has voluntarily disbanded and will reconvene should the need arise. On April 29, 2021, the Ministry of Health released an update to Ontario’s COVID-19 vaccination plan. The updated plan outlined a Phase 2 schedule for COVID-19 vaccine booking eligibility and provided additional clarity regarding eligible groups. Given this additional direction, the need for regional prioritization has waned.

Updates from the COVID-19 Vaccine Prioritization Advisory Committee

Terms of Reference

Vision:

An equitable and risk-based prioritization of recipients of the COVID-19 vaccine in the Huron Perth Public Health, Middlesex-London Health Unit, and Southwestern Public Health regions.

Purpose:

Within the provincial government’s Ontario’s Vaccine Distribution Implementation Plan and considering vaccine supply, determine the regional prioritization of recipients of the COVID-19 vaccine using the ethical framework described by the federal and provincial government.

Background:

The province has outlined a three-phased vaccination plan for the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine. These phases represent a system of prioritization based on the objective of minimizing severe outcomes/death associated with COVID-19. That is, the best available evidence and expert opinion suggests that by working in this order of priority, Ontario will be able to limit severe outcomes and death from COVID-19 more than if the vaccine was distributed in any other order. This plan was influenced by the National Advisory Council on Immunization (NACI) which publicly outlines this rationale.

Unfortunately, within the province’s first phase, there is insufficient vaccine to immediately vaccinate all eligible individuals. To address this gap, the province has entrusted local public health units to further prioritize within groups eligible in Phase 1. The province has provided two documents that support this additional prioritization:

The public health units will continue to follow the direction of NACI and the Province in prioritizing only when there are evidence-based reasons to believe it will positively affect the goal of minimizing severe outcomes/death associated with COVID-19. If there is no evidence-based reason to believe that prioritizing one group over another will positively affect this objective, an orderly sequencing process will be used that ensures everyone (of equal priority) has equal access to the vaccine in a given period of time. Depending on availability of vaccine, this may include a process of randomization.

Composition and Membership:

The membership of the committee is intended to be reflective of relevant populations within the region. It does not aim to represent professions or professional groups.

Representative  Organization Position
Dr. Miriam Klassen Huron Perth Public Health Medical Officer of Health
Dr. Alex Summers Middlesex-London Health Unit Associate Medical Officer of Health - Chair
Dr. Joyce Lock Southwestern Public Health Medical Officer of Health
Dr. Scott McKay London Health Sciences Centre Family Physician, Medical Director, Western Fair Agriplex Clinic
Dr. Gord Schacter London Middlesex Primary Care Alliance Family Physician, London Middlesex Pandemic Clinical Lead
Dr. Paul Gill Huron Perth & Area OHT Family Physician, South West Primary Care COVID Response Co-Chair, Huron Perth Pandemic Lead
Dr. Michael Silverman St. Joseph’s Hospital Infectious disease physician
Jody Paget Middlesex-London Health Unit Manager, Vaccine Preventable Diseases
Rob Sibbald London Health Sciences Centre, Western University Director, Ethics, Patient Experience, Health Equity, Indigenous Liaison
April Mullen London Health Sciences Centre Director, Western Fair Agriplex COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic
 
Date of creation: January 20, 2021
Last modified on: May 5, 2021