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Here's What You Need To Know About COVID-19 Booster Doses In Canada

One province has offered third doses to some residents.

Trending Senior Staff Writer

Here's What You Need To Know About COVID-19 Booster Doses In Canada

As the country moves through the pandemic, there is more and more talk about COVID-19 vaccine booster doses, including if they'll be needed, by who and when.

Here's what vaccine manufacturers, governments and organizations have said about third doses of COVID-19 vaccines.

What has Moderna said about booster doses?

Moderna revealed at the beginning of August that people who have received two doses of its vaccine will probably need to get a third booster dose soon.

This is because it's believed that the Delta variant, combined with more indoor gatherings as the season changes and fatigue with personal preventive measures like wearing a mask, will cause more cases among vaccinated people.

The booster dose "is likely to be necessary this fall" and will probably have to be administered before winter arrives, Moderna said.

What has Pfizer said about booster doses?

In April, Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said a third dose would likely be needed "somewhere between six and 12 months" of getting fully vaccinated, and the booster vaccine could become available in the fall or winter of this year.

He also said that there might be the need for yearly vaccinations, just like what happens with the flu shot.

Pfizer has been testing a third booster dose since February.

What's happening in Canada and around the world with booster doses?

Justin Trudeau announced in April that Canada had secured 35 million doses from Pfizer for 2022 to be used as boosters. Along with those guaranteed doses, Canada also has 30 million doses secured for 2023.

The Government of Canada has said that there will be access to COVID-19 vaccines "into the future" and the agreement with Pfizer is not just for boosters but for new vaccine adaptations, including doses for younger populations.

In August, Trudeau revealed that the government has also signed a deal with Moderna for an additional 40 million guaranteed doses in 2022 and 2023.

In July, the Quebec government said that it's offering third doses to residents whose vaccination status isn't recognized by some places because they've received a mixed vaccine series.

South of the border, the CDC released a new recommendation on August 13 that people with moderately to severely compromised immune systems should get another dose after receiving two doses of a vaccine.

However, the World Health Organization (WHO) asked countries at the beginning of August to not administer booster doses until at least the end of September.

"We need an urgent reversal from the majority of vaccines going to high-income countries to the majority going to low-income countries," said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director-general of the WHO.

The WHO hopes that countries holding off on giving their populations third doses will allow for at least 10% of the population in every country to get vaccinated.

Health Canada has a robust website with all the latest information on COVID-19 vaccines and can answer any questions you may have.

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