With the announcement of Moderna SpikeVax for children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years old becoming available, the Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) said that an announcement about booster eligibility should be released in mid-August.
The SHA says that Saskatchewan, like other provinces, is heading into another wave of COVID-19. In the SHA’s most recent EPI COVID-19 update, the province has seen a small spike in the province’s positivity rate from the Omicron B5 variant.
“So of course, lots of interest in what Saskatchewan is planning to do with expanding access to booster doses for older age groups. So, Saskatchewan is targeting mid-August for an announcement about this plan,” says Deputy Chief Medical Health Officer Dr. Julie Kryzanowsk.
The plan will include what age groups will become eligible to receive their 3rd or 4th doses of the vaccine as well as tell people with certain health conditions whether or not they should prioritize getting a booster.
However, Kryzanowsk says only a small group of Saskatchewan residents who are already eligible for their boosters hasn’t gone to get the shot.
“Only 30 per cent of those currently eligible for their booster dose have received them and in the population of aged 50 and older only 30 per cent of those have received their 4th dose. So, there is room for improvement within the province and with the recommendations for booster doses that we have in place right now.”
Currently, all Saskatchewan residents of ages 12 and over are eligible for their 3rd booster dose and anyone aged 50 years or older is eligible for their 4th dose.
“We do know that these booster doses can make a difference on the impact and duration of this next wave of COVID-19. So, we really encourage everyone who’s eligible for those 3rd and 4th booster doses to book those appointments now,” says Kryzanowsk.
Kryzanowsk also shares that the announcement is aimed for release in mid-August to allow vaccination clinics to prioritize getting the Moderna SpikeVax in the arms of the younger population.