Teachers and education staff in northwestern Ontario shouldn’t expect their COVID-19 vaccination until June, says Medical Officer of Health with the Northwestern Health Unit, Dr. Kit Young-Hoon.

“General staff of the education system will become eligible when the [provincial booking] system opens up to those who work remotely, which is estimated to start at about the beginning of June and is highly dependent on vaccine supply,” explained Young-Hoon during a virtual press conference on April 16.

Ontario’s vaccine priority plan says education workers in high-risk neighbourhoods in Toronto and Peel are eligible to be vaccinated, and any education worker in Ontario who supports students with special needs is also eligible.

“At this point, the province has given direction that staff that work with special education students are eligible for vaccines. That process is in place,” confirms Young-Hoon. “They are now able to book an appointment at one of our mass immunization clinics.”

Childcare workers and early childhood educators are also now eligible as part of Ontario’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan, after the province’s announcement they would be providing free emergency childcare to eligible front-line workers and their families.

As of April 19, the NWHU has reported administering over 19,000 COVID-19 vaccinations in the area.

They say at least 84 percent of residents aged 80 and older in the region have received their first dose, 60 percent of those aged 70 to 79 have been protected, and close to 13 percent of residents between the ages of 18 and 69 have received a dose of the vaccine.

You can find information on how to book an appointment HERE.

Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms or who has been in contact with a positive case of the virus is asked to self-isolate, get tested and remain in isolation until your test results are known.