Individuals with high-risk health conditions eligible for COVID-19 vaccine – assistance requested to advise patients
April 8, 2021
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To: Primary Care Practitioners & Specialist Providers
FOR IMMEDIATE ATTENTION
Seeking your assistance to advise patients with high-risk health condition to book an appointment for their COVID-19 vaccine
In follow-up to the March 31 Advisory Alert seeking assistance to advise individuals with highest-risk health conditions of vaccine eligibility, this Advisory Alert requests your assistance to identify and inform your patients with high-risk health conditions of their eligibility for COVID-19 vaccination. Once again, eligible populations will follow the provincial plan for Phase 2 of the COVID-19 vaccination rollout.
Identify patients with high-risk health conditions
Public Health Sudbury & Districts is requesting primary care providers to contact patients who have high-risk health conditions to inform them they are eligible for vaccine. We are asking you to share with them the booking information they will need to schedule an immunization appointment for themselves and their essential caregiver, as appropriate.
Those eligible for vaccine under the “high-risk health condition group” include:
High-risk health conditions:
- Obesity (BMI over 40)
- Other treatments causing immunosuppression (for example, chemotherapy, immunity-weakening medications)
- Intellectual or developmental disabilities (for example, Down Syndrome)
Essential caregivers may also be eligible:
- Up to one primary essential caregiver for certain individuals in the High-Risk Health Conditions Group
- An essential caregiver is someone providing direct, frequent and sustained in person personal care and/or assistance with activities of daily living to the individual.
- Essential caregivers to children with high-risk health conditions are also eligible.
Important note: The list of high-risk health conditions is not exhaustive. Health care practitioners are asked to use their best medical judgement to identify patients with health conditions not listed that may put them at similar or greater risk to listed conditions.
Share booking and clinic details with your patients
Once the individuals have been identified, we ask that you share booking details with them as described below. Note that booking for individuals with high-risk health conditions opens only on April 17.
Provide your patients with the following booking information:
- Call 674.2299 (toll-free: 1.800.708.2505) OR 1-844-782-2273 to book an appointment.
- They must provide the clinic code provided to you at time of booking to validate eligibility.
- Upon booking, they will be asked if they have an essential caregiver who is also eligible.
Booking for the individuals with high-risk health conditions will only be opened as of April 17, 2021. Individuals who call before April 17 will not be able to book an appointment.
This process will ensure that all highest-risk patients have had opportunity to book before those at high-risk and that high-risk patients are offered the opportunity to book appointments before individuals with at-risk health conditions. It will help to ensure the safety of our most at-risk community members.
Note: If individuals cannot contact their health care provider for booking details, they may still call to book an appointment. A thorough assessment will be done at the vaccine clinic to determine medical suitability for vaccination. If it is assessed that further medical consultation is required, the immunization will not occur.
Clinics will be offered by appointment late April and into May. All clinics will follow the mass immunization model with special considerations to ensure clients have time to ask questions.
In Greater Sudbury, the first clinics for this group will occur at Carmichael Arena.
In the areas of Chapleau, Lacloche Foothills, Manitoulin Island, and Sudbury East, opportunities for immunization will align with the mass clinic model dates and locations.
Clinic dates and details will be shared via our website at: https://www.phsd.ca/health-topics-programs/vaccines-immunizations/coronavirus-covid-19-vaccine/upcoming-vaccination-clinics-for-specific-priority-groups/. They will also be advertised through our social media channels.
In Greater Sudbury, Public Health Sudbury & Districts is using the BookJane scheduling app to schedule individuals to work in our vaccine clinics. The app sends available clinic shifts out and allows us to quickly confirm staffing resources. If you are interested in working a vaccination clinic and are part of our primary care registry, please contact us at PCC_Vaccine_Questions@phsd.ca so we can invite you to join the app.
In the areas of Chapleau, Lacloche Foothills, Manitoulin Island, and Sudbury East, if you are not already connected to a local Implementation Committee and involved in clinic scheduling and you would like to be, please contact us at PCC_Vaccine_Questions@phsd.ca.
Once those with high-risk health conditions have had an opportunity to book an appointment, we will inform you of the process for booking at-risk health conditions to book appointments.
As it is expected that primary care will have AstraZeneca vaccine for use in practices in the coming weeks, it is possible that immunization of at-risk individuals may be done in primary care practices. Until that time, Public Health will organize clinics with your assistance to ensure your patients can be immunized in a timely fashion.
All clinic details are available on our website as they open for booking: https://www.phsd.ca/health-topics-programs/vaccines-immunizations/coronavirus-covid-19-vaccine/upcoming-vaccination-clinics-for-specific-priority-groups/
For additional information on the COVID-19 vaccines, as well as for specifics on how it is being rolled out locally, please visit Public Health’s COVID-19 vaccine webpage.
Original Signed By
Dr. Penny Sutcliffe
Medical Officer of Health and Chief Executive Officer
NOTE: All Advisory Alerts are found on our website.
 For planning purposes, please see the list of at-risk health conditions below.
At-risk health conditions
- Immune deficiencies and autoimmune disorders
- Stroke and cerebrovascular disease
- Liver disease
- All other cancers
- Respiratory diseases
- Spleen problems
- Heart disease
- Hypertension with end organ damage
- Diagnosed mental disorder
- Substance use disorders
- Sickle cell disease
- Immunocompromising health conditions
- Other disabilities requiring direct support care in the community
This item was last modified on April 8, 2021