COVID-19: Nova Scotians trying to book boosters

16 November 2022 Posted by: Lake Lawn B&B Great Yarmouth News

It would seem all the flu and respiratory illness going around right now is helping to fuel a surge in COVID-19 vaccine appointments, but not everyone has been able to book one.

“Everybody is eligible for something right now,” said Allison Bodnar, CEO of the Pharmacy Association of Nova Scotia, adding members have administered about 100,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine in the last month or so.

“Our five to 11 group, we’re constantly adding appointments in HRM, where we see demand seems to be highest. And we’ve got lots of appointments for the really young, the under five, and for the 18-plus, we have appointments through the province as well,” said Bodnar.

Robin Young got his fourth shot at Boyd’s Pharmacy Tuesday.

“As easy as it is, I was able to come in, it literally took me about two seconds, honestly, to get the shot,” said Young. “I sit here for 15 minutes. It’s easy to book online. I really don’t see why I wouldn’t get it.”

According to information dated Nov. 10 on the province’s COVID-19 dashboard, 617 Nova Scotians have died since March of 2020. 53.4 per cent of the population have had three or more vaccine doses. Of the rest, 82 per cent have had two shots and 3.4 per cent have only had one. The rest – nearly 15 per cent – have never had a COVID vaccine.

Still, the booking process hasn’t been smoothing sailing for everyone.

Kirsten Barr moved to Nova Scotia from Ontario a year ago and has had problems getting the system to acknowledge her previous shots.

She thinks the required information was finally submitted on the weekend, but it could take up to three weeks to be verified.

“And I haven’t had a shot since early in this year, so I’m due. And it makes you a little bit uncomfortable when you have to go out and do Christmas shopping and be in a grocery store, so I mask,” said Barr.

An email from the provincial Department of Health and Wellness Tuesday said, “Permanent residents of Nova Scotia who received a dose(s) of COVID-19 vaccine in another province, territory or county can submit their out-of-province dose online at which will update their Nova Scotia COVID-19 Proof of Vaccination.”

“It may take up to 3 weeks for the proof of vaccination to be updated. Once it is updated, they can book their next appointment,” the statement read, adding that Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Robert Strang would be speaking with media about this year’s flu season in the days ahead.

Expecting to be spending more time with friends and family over the holidays, Young said getting the booster was a no-brainer for him.

“So, if this can help me prevent spreading it, plus prevent me getting it myself, I’m really happy to do that.”

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