The bookings, previously available only to those aged 70 and over, would open to those born in 1961 or earlier. Bookings could be made at www.ontario.ca/bookvaccine or by calling the Vaccine Information Line at 1-888-999-6488.
EOHU Medical Officer of Health Dr. Paul Roumeliotis said about 33,000 more people would be vaccinated in the region between now and May 7, based on the projected vaccine supply.
The vaccine announcement came four days into a four-week province-wide “shutdown”. Indoor organized public events and social gatherings were banned, and capacity for outdoor organized public events or social gatherings were limited to a five-person maximum, except for gatherings with members of the same household or gatherings of members of one household and one other person who lives alone.
Weddings, funerals, and religious services, rites or ceremonies were limited to 15 percent of capacity for indoor rooms. The restrictions did not include social gatherings associated with those services such as receptions, which are not permitted indoors and are limited to five people outdoors.
The shutdown attracted criticism from some medical officers as not being strict enough, with officials in Toronto and Peel ordering additional local restrictions, including the closure of schools. Dr. Roumeliotis said a stay-at-home order should have been included among the new restrictions.
“In my mind, a full lockdown includes a stay-at-home order, because we want people to stay at home, not to be mobile,” he said. “If we do one last, full lockdown... and start vaccinating at a higher rate, I do believe we’ll come out in a better place.”
École élémentaire publique L'Académie de la Seigneurie and École secondaire catholique de Casselman, and École secondaire catholique régionale de Hawkesbury were closed until April 19 due to outbreaks. Outbreaks continued among staff at Heritage Lodge in Vankleek Hill and Le Genesis Retirement Home in Limoges.
Of the 401 cases in the EOHU on Tuesday, 173 were in Prescott-Russell communities, including:
40 in Russell;
32 in Hawkesbury;
30 in Clarence-Rockland;
18 in Casselman;
18 in East Hawkesbury;
15 in The Nation;
11 in Alfred-Plantagenet, and;
9 in Champlain