Latest update on COVID Vaccine

COVID vaccination has been proven to be safe and extremely effective at reducing illness, hospitalization, ICU admission and death.

Please get vaccinated to protect yourself, your family and your community.

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Please do not call our office regarding the COVID vaccine. We need to keep our phone lines free for patients with immediate medical needs. Your best resource is the Ottawa Public Health website (link below). 

We recommend taking the first vaccine offered to you.

As of January 12th, community clinics will be open for drop-ins to everyone eligible for a first dose, second dose and booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

COVID Vaccine for Priority Groups

*** New COVID-19 vaccine drop-in pre-registration tool
Ottawa Public Health has increased drop-in capacity at certain community clinics to prioritize immunizing these four groups: 

  • Individuals aged 60 and older
  • Educational and childcare workers
  • Employees, volunteers and caregivers of residents of long-term care and retirement homes
  • Pregnant individuals

Starting January 6th, residents in these priority groups can submit information via Ottawa Public Health’s new online via Ottawa Public Health’s new online COVID-19 vaccine drop-in pre-registration tool to access a drop-in appointment at a nearby clinic.

This tool screens for eligibility while collecting information about location preference to ensure a registered individual is notified quickly when a drop-in spot at a nearby vaccine clinic becomes available. If a clinic has same-day openings, individuals who register will be contacted by email or text message and asked to confirm their ability to attend a clinic.

*** Effective Monday, January 10th, Ottawa Public Health is increasing drop-in eligibility at certain community clinics to prioritize immunizing these four groups:

EY Centre  4899 Uplands Drive

  • January 10 – onward: 7:45 am to 8:10 pm

University of Ottawa – Minto Sports Complex  801 King Edward Avenue

  • January 10 – onward: 7:45 am to 8:10 pm

Nepean Sportsplex (Curling Rink – Entrance 4)– 1701 Woodroffe Avenue

  • January 10 – onward: 7:45 am to 7:10 pm

Adults over 60 remain at greater risk for serious illness and complications from COVID-19. For many, their immunity is likely to have decreased and getting a third (booster) dose ensures they are as protected as possible against serious illness and complications from COVID-19. Adults aged 60 and older who have received two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine and at least 84 days (three months) have passed since their last dose are encouraged to contact OPH’s booking line today to book an appointment.

For pregnant individuals, getting the COVID-19 vaccine can help prevent complications or bad outcomes for parent and baby. Like everyone else, most pregnant people have mild COVID-19. However, pregnant people are at an increased risk of severe illness requiring hospital care and admission to the intensive care unit compared to those who are not pregnant. The antibodies a pregnant individual makes from the vaccine pass to the baby and help protect the baby after birth. Giving birth too early in pregnancy (preterm birth), having a caesarean delivery and having a baby admitted into a neonatal intensive care unit is more common in pregnant people with severe COVID-19. Pregnant individuals needing a COVID-19 vaccine, either first, second or booster dose are encouraged to call OPH’s booking line today.

COVID vaccine booking:

Useful website showing availability of vaccine appointments:

Community Clinics

  • *** As of January 12th, our community clinics will be open for drop-ins to everyone eligible for a first dose, second dose and booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
  • Book appointment or call 1-833-943-3900. If you do not have a valid health card but are eligible for a vaccine, please call Ottawa Public Health at 613-691-5505 to book an appointment.

EY Centre, 4899 Uplands Drive

January 2 to January 5:  7:45 am to 8:10 pm

Nepean Sportsplex Curling Rink – Entrance 4

(Operated by The Ottawa Hospital), 1701 Woodroffe Avenue

Nepean Sportsplex – Halls A & B

  • Note: This clinic is intended for our more vulnerable residents 60 plus who are still needing a booster dose. Appointments are required by calling 613-691-5505.

January 2 – onward:  8:15 am to 7:30 pm

  • January 4 – January 6: 12:45 pm to 7:15 pm
  • January 7 to January 9: 9:45 am to 4:15pm

Former St. Patrick’s Intermediate School, 1485 Heron Road

January 2 to January 8:  7:45 am to 8:10 pm

Rideauview Community Centre, 4310 Shore Line Drive

  • January 2:  9:45 am to 4:10 pm
  • January 3 to January 6: 12:45 pm to 7:10 pm
  • January 7 and 8: 9:45 am to 4:10 pm 

University of Ottawa – Minto Sports Complex 801 King Edward Avenue

Monday to Thursday: 12:45pm to 7:15pm, Friday to Sunday: 9:45am to 4:15pm

January 2 to January 8:  7:45 am to 8:10 pm

JH Putman School 2051 Bel-Air Drive

Monday to Thursday: 12:45pm to 7:15pm, Friday to Sunday: 9:45am to 4:15pm

  • January 2:  9:45 am to 4:10 pm
  • January 3 to January 6: 12:45 pm to 7:10 pm 
  • January 7 and January 8: 9:45 am to 4:10 pm

Eva James Memorial Centre 65 Stonehaven Drive

Monday to Thursday: 12:45pm to 7:15pm, Friday to Sunday: 9:45am to 4:15pm

January 2 to January 8:  7:45 am to 8:10 pm

Orleans Ruddy Family YMCA-YWCA 265 Centrum Blvd

Monday to Thursday: 12:45pm to 7:15pm, Friday to Sunday: 9:45am to 4:15pm

  • January 2:  9:45 am to 4:10 pm 
  • January 3 to January 6: 12:45 pm to 7:10 pm 
  • January 7 and January 8: 9:45 am to 4:10 pm 

Third dose Eligibility

*** Starting Monday, December 20 at 8 am, individuals aged 18 and over (born in 2003 or earlier) will be eligible to schedule a third dose (booster) appointment if at least 3 months (84 days) have passed since their last dose. This aligns with the recent provincial announcement on expanded eligibility and provides Ottawa residents with an extra layer of protection against COVID-19 and its variants.

Ottawa residents who meet the criteria are encouraged to reach out to local pharmacies using the provincial pharmacy locator to find those that provide the booster dose, or book an appointment through the provincial COVID-19 vaccination portal or by calling the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre at 1-833-943-3900.

Vaccine for Children Ages 5-11

For children aged 5-11, the National Advisory Committee on Immunization recommends an 8 week interval between first and second doses, as evidence shows this schedule produces a stronger and longer-lasting immune response. However, a shorter interval of no less than 21 days has been shown to be safe and effective. Parents who wish to book their child at a shorter interval have the option to do so by calling the provincial booking line at 1-833-943-3900 or dropping into a community clinic.

*** As of November 23, Ottawa residents are able to book vaccine appointments for five to 11-year-olds (born 2016 or earlier) through the provincial booking system. These appointments will be at one of Ottawa Public Health’s seven community clinics.

Other options for vaccinating five to 11-year-olds include:

  • Neighbourhood vaccination hubs (see below)
  • Pharmacies – over 100 locations across the city are starting to offer vaccines to this age group; find the nearest participating pharmacy for appointment hours and locations 
  • CHEO – the hospital offers vaccinations to children with medically complex needs
  • First Nations, Inuit and Métis community members – Wabano Centre for Aboriginal Health will host a clinic at the Richelieu-Vanier Community Centre in partnership with Ottawa Public Health
  • Inuit community members – Akausivik Inuit Family Health Team is providing vaccinations for Inuit youth; call 613-740-0999 for more information or to book an appointment
  • Primary care – primary care physicians will be reaching out directly to their patients if they are offering COVID-19 pediatric vaccines in their offices – IF AND WHEN OUR CLINIC HAS THE COVID VACCINE, WE WILL LET OUR PATIENTS KNOW!

Common patient questions about vaccinating children:

  • Vaccine efficacy is high (90.7%) against symptomatic COVID in the preliminary clinical trial data and there were no serious safety concerns and no cases of myocarditis or pericarditis. 
  • The risk for myocarditis is expected to be significantly lower in 5-11 year cohort given the lower dosage (10ug), longer interval between doses (8 weeks) and what we understand about a lower predisposition of myocarditis in younger children. More information on myocarditis post-vaccination in this UWaterloo two-pager
  •  A 14-day interval between the COVID vaccine and other vaccines is recommended by NACI as a precaution to better monitor for adverse events; however, it is recognized that this may not always be feasible. 
  • Children who are turning 12 this year (2021) are recommended to get the adult dose (30ug). A child who is 11 should get the pediatric dose rather than wait weeks or months to become eligible for the adult dose. If they receive the first (pediatric) dose and turn 12 ahead of their second dose, they may then receive the adult dose, although a pediatric second dose can also complete the series. 
  • Dosing for the vaccine is based on age, not weight, and antibody response of the 10ug in children five to 11 years old was equivalent to the 30ug dose in older children.
  • A reminder that short-term menstrual cycle changes have been reported but fertility and hormone levels are not affected by vaccines. See vaccine myths and facts from the SOGC.

Useful resources:

Kids Come First Health Team vaccination clinics

CHEO is working with its Kids Come First Health Team partners, including Ottawa Public Health, physicians and families to help vaccinate as many children as possible.

Individuals served:

The Kids Come First Health Team will be holding vaccination clinics at CHEO for children 5-11 who cannot attend a community vaccination clinic. Reasons a child may have difficulty receiving their vaccination in the community include:

  • being immunocompromised
  • having medical complexities or technology dependency that make it difficult to attend a clinic in the community (e.g. tracheostomy, ventilator, uncontrolled seizure disorder)
  • having a condition that makes it challenging to be in crowded spaces (e.g. anxiety, autism)
  • other medical reasons that are not listed above, but make it challenging for the child to be vaccinated in the community

The clinic will be open to eligible children and their household members.

If your 5-11 year old child meets the criteria above, we encourage you to pre-register for their COVID-19 vaccine through the Kids Come First Health Team’s upcoming vaccination clinics.

Please note, that pre-registration does not mean you are booking an appointment.

Vax Facts

Not really sure about the COVID-19 vaccine, or the information you’ve seen?

No problem — our new VaxFacts Clinic is here to connect you with qualified SHN doctors who understand you may have questions or concerns, or just want to learn more.

You can book an appointment to do a call with one of our expert doctors. They are ready to talk, listen and help you get the most accurate information.

COVID-19 Vaccine Consult Service through Sick Kids:

Myths and Facts about COVID-19 Vaccine in Pregnancy:

Ottawa Public Health:

COVID Vaccine Pharmacy locations:



Generally speaking, there are very few acceptable medical exemptions to the COVID-19 vaccination and exemptions to the mRNA covid vaccines almost exclusively fall into two categories at this time:

  • an allergist/immunologist-confirmed severe allergy or anaphylactic reaction to a previous dose of a COVID-19 vaccine or to any of its components that cannot be mitigated;
  • a diagnosed episode of myocarditis/pericarditis after receipt of an mRNA vaccine.

This is data from approximately 1.7M people in Israel recently published. You can see that getting infected (orange) puts you at higher risk of arrhythmias, kidney injury, blood clots (deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism), heart inflammation (myocarditis and pericarditis), heart attacks (myocardial infarction), and brain bleeds (intracranial hemorrhage). Vaccines DO increase your risk of shingles (herpes zoster infection) and lymph node swelling.

AstraZeneca vaccines

For those who received the AstraZeneca as their first vaccine, rest assured that you did the right thing! The the reason for the pause of AstraZeneca rollout as a first vaccine was multifactorial (including an increased supply of mRNA vaccines and declining COVID numbers). You took an extremely effective vaccine, decreasing your risk of illness, hospitalization and death, and contributing to the decreasing transmission of COVID in our community. The overall risk of blood clots remains very low (estimated 1.7: 100,000 based on Ontario data and 1: 1 million for 2nd doses based on UK data).

Please do not phone or email the clinic in regard to COVID vaccines.  

Information on vaccines:

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