Guidance for Routine Immunization Services During COVID-19
The Guidance document was updated on May 16, with an overview of the changes listed at the top of the document for quick reference.
Hepatitis B Tdap Immunization Eligibility Expansion - Pregnancy
Ontario has expanded its publicly funded Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis) immunization program to include a routine dose in every pregnancy, for protection against pertussis based on NACI recommendations.
All pregnant individuals in Ontario are now eligible to receive the vaccine for free in each pregnancy (ideally between 27 and 32 weeks of gestation).
Since the risk of severe pertussis infections and death occurs mostly in infants, Tdap vaccination during pregnancy is expected to greatly reduce this risk due to the transplacental transfer of maternal pertussis antibodies, allowing for immunity in the first months of life when the risk is highest and before the infant can start their pertussis immunization series.
The safety of receiving this vaccine in pregnancy has been well-established.
As part of routine prenatal care, please discuss and offer or refer your patients to receive Tdap vaccine during every pregnancy.
For additional details:
Additional information and resources will be shared once available.
Hepatitis B Program Expansion
Beginning in the 2022-2023 school year, students who missed one or both doses of hepatitis B vaccine in Grade 7 will have until the end of grade 12 to complete the series under Ontario's publicly funded program. Previous eligibility ended in grade 8 for students who missed one or both doses in grade 7.
Students currently in Grade 9 (born in 2007) and Grade 10 (born in 2006) may be missing doses of Hepatitis B due to delays related to the pandemic. These students are eligible to receive the doses until August 31 of their Grade 12 year. Those 16 and older require 3 doses to complete the series.
Hepatitis B vaccine will continue to be offered as a 2-dose series in grade 7 as part of the school-based immunization program offered by public health units.
See below for details as per Ontario’s Publicly Funded Immunization Schedules
For more information, please see Hepatitis B Vaccine: Canadian Immunization Guide - Canada.ca
Additional information will be shared once available.
Universal Influenza Immunization Program (UIIP)
The application process for pharmacies and other organizations interested in participating in the 2022/23 UIIP went live May 2 and has a deadline of July 10, 2022 at 11:59 pm.
Information about applying to the UIIP and applications are available in English and French.
Understanding Canada’s Vaccine Injury Support Program: This webinar providing health care professionals with an overview of Canada’s Vaccine Injury Support Program (VISP). The webinar will cover elements such as the program’s purpose, eligibility criteria and processes. Register here
Research into action: How immunization research influences public health policy decisions in Canada: his webinar will cover the following how immunization policy decisions are made in Canada as well as the effective knowledge translation strategies researchers can use to inform immunization policy decisions in Canada. Register here.