MLHU vaccination effort now moving to high-risk retirement homes
LONDON, ONT. -- The health unit says vaccination of residents at long-term care homes have been completed, and they will now move to high-risk retirement homes, hoping to complete those by Wednesday.
“All together that’s something in the range of just over 6,000 residents of long-term care and retirement homes. That’s on top of the 10,000 or so staff that were vaccinated at the Agriplex,” says Dr. Chris Mackie, chief medical officer of health with the Middlesex London Health Unit (MLHU).
High-risk retirement homes were next in line for the vaccine, which according to Mackie include facilities attached to long-term care homes, among other criteria,
“They would include homes that have had challenges with staffing levels, keeping their staffing levels up, homes that have had recent or ongoing outbreaks, those sorts of things.”
The Ministry of Health set the guidelines as to what classifies as a high-risk retirement home. Homes that aren’t on that list will have to wait longer while vaccine supplies are replenished.
People also waiting will be those who have recovered from COVID-19.
“People who have already had COVID-19 are eligible for the vaccine. They aren’t very first forward on the line. And that’s because they have some residual protection. Cases of reinfection do occur but in Canada they have been quite rare,” Mackie says.
During Monday’s media briefing, Mackie said after wrapping up the high-risk retirement homes on Wednesday, they would take a pause for a week-and-a-half to allow for supply of the vaccines to resume.
Depending on whether there are delays in the resupply of vaccines, those in long-term care homes may have to wait between 28-42 days for the second dose.