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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.

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 the vaccines and can answer any questions you may have. Click here for more information.

The City announced that Toronto Public Health (TPH) is getting ready to vaccinate children between five and 11 years old and created a COVID-19 Vaccination Planning Group.

That being said, they are still waiting upon the approval from Health Canada as well as the receipt of vaccination for these kids from Ontario's Ministry of Health. According to the City, there are about 200,000 kids between ages 5 to 11 who are eligible to get vaccinated for COVID-19.

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Canada is trying to get the U.S. and other countries around the world to recognize people who have received mixed vaccine doses as fully vaccinated so they can travel.

Speaking at a press conference about COVID-19 on September 24, Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam revealed that Canada has been engaging with the U.S. and other countries that are top destinations for Canadians and presenting the country's data about the effectiveness of mixed doses.

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Toronto's medical officer of health, Dr. Eileen de Villa, is recommending that Ontario require COVID-19 vaccination for students who are eligible based on their age or year of birth.

Children who are 12 years old and older are currently eligible for COVID-19 vaccines in Ontario, so students in grades six and up would need to show proof of vaccination in order to attend classes if the province were to follow through on de Villa's recommendation.

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Severe illness or even death is "an absolutely likely outcome."

Alberta's top doctor has a warning for residents as the province continues to struggle with rising cases of COVID-19.

On Thursday, September 23, Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw spoke at a press conference and addressed unconfirmed reports that a group of people gathered in a "deliberate attempt to acquire COVID-19 in order to develop post-infection immunity."

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