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COVID-19 vaccines arrive in Timmins area

Long-term care, high-risk retirement home, and First Nations elder care residents are first priority

TIMMINS - The Porcupine Health Unit has received its first shipment of the COVID-19 vaccine. 

The PHU covers the regions of Timmins to Moosonee and from Hearst to Matheson.

Yesterday, the Timiskaming Health Unit and North Bay Parry Sound District Health Units also received their first doses of the vaccine as well. Public Health Sudbury and Districts is expecting its shipment in the coming weeks as well.

In the Algoma region, the Sault Area Hospital board heard at last night's meeting that the Moderna vaccine is expected in the Sault "in a week or so." 

Sault Area Hospital President and CEO Wendy Hansson said the arrival of the Moderna vaccine is 'imminent,' and SAH's role is going to focus on getting Pfizer's vaccine delivered and distributed throughout Algoma.

The first vaccines will be administered to residents at long-term care facilities, high-risk retirement homes, and to First Nations elder care residents. The provincial expectation is to have those completed by Feb. 5.

 “The PHU COVID-19 vaccination playbook is currently being finalized and includes ongoing collaboration with partners across sectors and communities to support and implement this critical next step in the response to the pandemic,” said Catton. “All decisions made about the distribution of the vaccine follow Ontario’s Ethical Framework for COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution.” 

As of this afternoon, Algoma Public Health has confirmed 150 cases of COVID-19 in the region and two deaths.

- With files from Maija Hoggett/TimminsToday