Toronto officials say they are preparing to vaccinate the over 200,000 eligible children aged five to 11 in the city against COVID-19.
A COVID-19 Vaccination Planning Group has been formed which includes health partners, school board, community representatives and Ontario’s Ministry of Health.
Health Canada still has to approve a COVID-19 vaccine for children of the age group. In Canada, only those aged 12 and older are eligible at the moment.
School staff in Ontario must be vaccinated against COVID-19 or be regularly tested for the virus.
The Toronto District School Board mandated the requirement that trustees, employees and anyone in direct contact with students and staff must be fully vaccinated. The deadline to show proof of vaccination is Nov. 1.
No such rule is in place for students, but Toronto’s top doctor has asked for that to change.
Dr. Eileen de Villa wrote to the city’s board of health this month, asking it to request the province to require COVID-19 vaccination for eligible students based on their age. She was set to present that recommendation to the board at a Monday meeting.
In her Sept. 13 letter to the board of health, de Villa referenced the nine other diseases covered under the Immunization of School Pupils Act, which students enrolled in school must be vaccinated against.