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Ontario Will Be Administering Second Doses Of AstraZeneca Starting Next Week

"We are providing these individuals with a safe option based on the available data and evidence."

The Ontario government announced on Friday that it will resume administering second doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine across the province.

In a press release, the government revealed that the rollout of second doses will begin next week for those who received their first dose of the vaccine between March 10 and March 19.

Individuals who are eligible are being asked to contact the pharmacy or care provider where they received their first dose to book an appointment beginning the week of May 24.

On May 11, the Ontario government paused the rollout and administration of the first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine due to a link to a rare blood clotting condition known as "vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia (VITT)."

However, data from the U.K. shows that there is a "much-reduced risk" of VITT in second doses.

"We are providing these individuals with a safe option based on the available data and evidence and will continue to work with Health Canada to monitor the quality and efficacy of all COVID-19 vaccines being used in Ontario," said Dr. David Williams, Ontario's chief medical officer of health.

While those who got their first vaccine dose between March 10 and 19 are now eligible to get their second after 10 weeks, the Ontario government states that everyone else can schedule their second dose at 12 weeks.