Amidst all the vaccination chaos, homebound seniors seem to have been forgotten about in Ontario’s vaccination plans
Seniors who are unable to leave their homes/beds for their own health and safety, have no access or option to get vaccinated. Although seniors that are homebound or bedridden have little contact with the rest of the world and lower exposure to the virus, they are still not fully protected against it.
Getting vaccinated would help protect them from contracting COVID-19 through PSW’s that come in and out of their home to take care of them, as well as through family members that need to leave the house to run errands or go to work.
Ontario’s detailed 3 phase vaccination plan currently doesn’t include any mention of plans for vaccinating homebound seniors. Homebound seniors are technically under the jurisdiction of Home Care rather than Public Health. Although Public Health is still responsible for the health of the entire region which should result in the inclusion of helpless homebound citizens in their plans.
Halton Public Health explains “We recognize that getting to a clinic will not be easy for everyone, especially those who are unable to leave their home. We are exploring ways to transport this vaccine in order to immunize homebound residents. More information will be provided once a plan is finalized.”
The main struggle with this current issue is transportation of the vaccine. The Government has been providing Ontario with the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine which is stored at a temperature of -70ºC. This uncommon temperature makes it difficult to transport singular or very few units to several different locations.
As the Government is beginning to send the Moderna vaccine to Ontario, there will soon be steps taken to vaccinate homebound seniors and everyone else in the Province. The Moderna vaccine is stored at a temperature of -20ºC which makes it easier and safer to transport in singular or very few doses to multiple locations.
There is a plan in the works that will soon allow the vaccine to travel to individual homes. For more information visit https://covid-19.ontario.ca/ontarios-covid-19-vaccination-plan or call 311.