Effective Thursday, Nov. 25, Winnipeg’s vaccine site at RBC Convention Centre will no longer be accepting walk-in appointments in anticipation of a high volume of appointments for youth ages 5 to 11. Individuals who wish to be immunized at this location can make an appointment online or through the vaccine call centre at (toll-free) 1-844-626-8222 (1-844-MAN-VACC).
Currently, appointments for children ages 5 to 11 are only being booked at supersites. The vaccine will be arriving at participating medical clinics and pharmacies between Nov. 25 and 29. As of 11 a.m., nearly 13,000 appointments have been booked for children ages 5 to 11 online or through the provincial call centre.
First appointments are available as early as the end of the week. Parents and caregivers who need to book two or more appointments for their children can use either option but the phone line is recommended as the best way to access multiple appointments at the same time and as close together as possible.
The National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) recommends children receive their COVID-19 vaccine two weeks before or after any other vaccines they may receive to better monitor for any side effects. Manitoba recommendations are consistent with NACI on this but children who have received a different vaccine within the last 14 days will not be turned away.
To be eligible, children must be five at the time the appointment is booked. There are approximately 125,000 children in Manitoba in this age group.
The COVID-19 viral-vector vaccine Janssen is now available at some pharmacies and medical clinics to those ages 18 and older. Individuals wishing to receive Janssen can check the updated online vaccine finder map at www.gov.mb.ca/covid19/vaccine/finder.html. Individuals are considered fully immunized 14 days after receiving their single dose. However, due to the relatively lower effectiveness of Janssen, the province recommends a second dose of an mRNA vaccine (Pfizer or Moderna) be given at least six months after first dose.
Currently, individuals with a single dose of Janssen are eligible to apply for a Manitoba immunization card through the regular process. However, a second COVID-19 vaccine dose may be required to ensure it remains valid.
A third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine is now available to all adults a minimum of six months after their last dose with limited exceptions. More information is available at https://manitoba.ca/covid19/vaccine/eligibility-criteria.html#third.
Eligibility for first and second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine includes anyone ages five or older.