The Fraser Health Authority is preparing to transition to a new provincial ‘Get Vaccinated’ online registration and booking system.
In a news release issued Tuesday afternoon, the FHA says its online booking tool is going through important maintenance to ensure there is a comprehensive transition to the provincial online booking and registration system set to launch on April 6.
According to Fraser Health, effective immediately, and until 7 a.m. on April 6, eligible people in the Fraser Health region who would like to book their COVID-19 immunization appointment can do so one of two ways:
- Between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. call the immunization booking phone line at 1-855-755-2455 (The phone line will operate from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday, April 2 and Monday, April 5 to align with the statutory holidays).
- Between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m. access Fraser Health’s self-serve online booking tool (The online tool will operate from 5 p.m. to 9 a.m. on Friday, April 2 and Monday, April 5. On Saturday, April 3 and Sunday, April 4 it will run from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m.).
FHA says to date they have booked just over 222,070 immunization appointments.
“We acknowledge that people in our communities want to book appointments as quickly as they become eligible,” said Fraser Health. “We appreciate everyone’s patience as we schedule very sizable populations into immunization appointments. We understand this transition coupled with high volumes has caused some challenges with people accessing the system.”
For more information about COVID-19, please visit fraserhealth.ca/covid19.
Partnership with community pharmacists
Meanwhile, the province has announced a partnership between Immunize BC and community pharmacists to make the COVID-19 AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD vaccine available to those aged 55 to 65 living in the Lower Mainland.
Beginning Wednesday those aged 55 to 65 may call their local pharmacy and book an appointment to receive their vaccine. Drop-in service may be an option at the more than 150 participating pharmacies. People must bring their personal health number, which is found on their BC Services Card or CareCard.
“We're moving ahead with our immunization plan and delivering on our promise to British Columbians to move as quickly as possible, and as safely as possible, to get them the vaccines that they have been waiting patiently for,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health in a news release.
To help combat high numbers of COVID-19 cases in the Lower Mainland, Immunize BC is partnering with community pharmacies in the Vancouver Coastal and Fraser health regions to provide vaccinations ahead of B.C.'s COVID-19 Immunization Plan's age-based schedule.
“The AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD vaccine is another important tool in our immunization program to get us past this surge of COVID-19 cases,” added Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.'s provincial health officer. “We know from the millions of doses used worldwide, and especially in the U.K., it is highly effective and the benefits to those over age 55 far outweigh the very real risks of getting COVID-19.”
On Monday, the National Advisory Committee on Immunization recommended a pause in the use of the AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD vaccine in all people under 55 years of age in Canada until more information is available on the rare events of blood clots seen in some countries in Europe.The province says there is now an opportunity to use AstraZeneca doses available in B.C. to focus on those whose risk of COVID-19 is higher and to give them protection sooner.