Victoria/Ottawa – As the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines get into gear, front line workers in BC will get the first shots next week. Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry literally did a happy dance when the announcement was made. Also on the priority list for the first 4000 doses are seniors in long term care, those in ICU, COVID Wards and ER.

Vaccines will continue arriving each week in B.C. in increasing quantities, with targeted deployment for people in priority groups. Expected timelines will depend on vaccine approval and availability.

Following the initial 4,000 Pfizer doses, vaccines will arrive each week in B.C. in increasing quantities. As these vaccines become more available, they will be expanded to other priority populations throughout British Columbia.

A registration and record system is in development, including a process to register for vaccine access and receive a formal record of immunization.

All vaccines go through a rigorous regulatory scientific review process for safety, quality and efficacy at Health Canada before being made available to the public.

From Health Canada:

Canada reached a critical milestone in its fight against COVID-19 with the authorization of the first COVID-19 vaccine on December 9.

Health Canada received Pfizer’s submission on October 9, 2020 and after a thorough, independent review of the evidence, Health Canada has determined that the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine meets the Department’s stringent safety, efficacy and quality requirements for use in Canada.

As part of its continued commitment to openness and transparency, Health Canada is publishing a number of documents related to this decision, including a high-level summary of the evidence that Health Canada reviewed to support the authorization of the vaccine. More detailed information will be available in the coming weeks, including a detailed scientific summary and the full clinical trial data package.

Canadians can feel confident that the review process was rigorous and that we have strong monitoring systems in place. Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada will closely monitor the safety of the vaccine once it is on the market and will not hesitate to take action if any safety concerns are identified.

The terms and conditions of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine authorization require the manufacturer to continue providing information to Health Canada on the safety, efficacy and quality of the vaccine to ensure the benefits of the vaccine continue to be demonstrated through market use.

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