As part of B.C.'s COVID-19 immunization strategy, the first round of COVID-19 vaccinations begin the week of December 14, 2020. The two COVID-19 vaccines that have been approved by Health Canada are safe, effective and will save lives. They are the Pfizer vaccine and the Moderna vaccine. The vaccines are free for all British Columbians. Below is a timeline for the various priority groups and the general population. Public health will arrange for the following priority groups to get the vaccine. No action is required on your part.
First priority groups
- Long-term care residents and staff
- Health-care facility staff for COVID-19 patients in settings like Intensive Care Units, COVID-19 wards and emergency departments
- Indigenous people living in rural or remote communities
- High risk people living in group settings like shelters
- People over 80 years old
Second priority groups
In spring 2021 as more vaccine becomes available, a second phase of vaccination will begin for:
- Older people under age 80 in descending five-year-age groups, with a focus on the oldest people first
- Key frontline workers including:
- All other healthcare workers
- Fire and first responders
- People working in grocery stores
- People working in K to 12 education settings and child care providers
- People working in transportation
- People working in manufacturing and production facilities
General population timeline
Following all priority groups, all others in BC can get the vaccine as it becomes available, if the vaccine is recommended for them.
Everyone the vaccine is recommended for in B.C. will have the opportunity to get the vaccine by the end of 2021. We estimate that we could reach herd immunity once 60 to 70% of the population is vaccinated. This would reduce transmission rapidly.