Updated February 2021
Read the COVID-19 Fact Sheet here.
Vaccine allotments for the City are determined by the provincial government in accordance with Ontario’s Ethical Framework for COVID-19 vaccine prioritization. The provincial government has a three-phase plan to distribute vaccines. Early doses are for Long Term Care Home and high-risk Retirement Home residents, staff and essential caregivers; health care workers in hospitals and congregate settings caring for seniors; and adults in First Nations, Métis and Inuit populations. At this time, there is currently a limited supply of vaccines available in Ontario. The City will continue to work with health sector partners and the Ministry of Health to prepare our plans for the wider roll-out of vaccination when additional vaccine is available.
When there is available vaccine supply, the current provincial outline will continue to immunize populations in phase 1. Phase 2 includes other priority population groups. COVID-19 vaccines will be available to the general public in Phase 3. The timing of Phase 3 has not been confirmed. We will continue to keep the public informed of these plans as they are finalized and communicated by the Ministry of Health.
The City has formed a COVID-19 Immunization Task Force, which includes experts from Toronto Public Health, Toronto Fire, Toronto Paramedics Service and the Emergency Operations Centre. The Task Force follows the guidance of the provincial government, and is using lessons learned from our annual flu vaccine clinics and experiences from the H1N1 influenza pandemic to inform the development and implementation of our mass immunization plan for Toronto.
All levels of government play important roles in delivering the COVID-19 vaccine to residents:
- The federal government is responsible for approving vaccines as safe and effective for use, and for procuring the vaccines.
- The provincial government is responsible for creating a provincial vaccination plan that includes distributing vaccines and supporting health system partners to deliver them to residents.
- The City of Toronto will promote the importance of the vaccine, including addressing vaccine hesitancy. The City of Toronto will immunize residents through mass vaccination clinics. The City of Toronto will liaise with other agencies that will immunize their own clients to relay provincial information and coordinate immunization plans. Toronto Public Health will also investigate adverse events following immunization, and share data with the Province.
The situation regarding vaccine supply continues to evolve. The City has a comprehensive communications plan to ensure that residents know when it is their turn to get vaccinated. We will continue to keep the public informed of plans as they are finalized. Information will be promoted through mainstream and social media platforms and other channels, and posted on our website (www.toronto.ca/COVID19vaccine).
There is a limited supply of vaccines in Ontario at this time. As a proof-of concept clinic with a small supply of allocated vaccine doses, the goal of the clinic was to test and adjust immunization clinic plans in a non-hospital setting to ensure safety and increase efficiency before wider and larger-scale immunization efforts were rolled out.
On January 19, 2021, the Province of Ontario directed the City of Toronto to immediately pause its proof-of-concept immunization clinic at the end of the day. This was due to vaccine supply shortages announced by the Government of Canada. We continue to work with health sector partners and the Ministry of Health to prepare our plans for the wider roll-out of immunization clinics when additional vaccine supply is available.