Tri-County Vanguard

Province rolling out more boosters


The following are some of the COVID updates the province had announced last week.

You can visit our website for the latest updates announced by Public Health.


Nova Scotia is ramping up its delivery of COVID-19 booster doses, adding more clinics and more immunizers across the province.

“With adequate vaccine supply secured from the federal government, the vaccine program will be significan­tly expanded to meet the demand for booster doses, while still prioritizi­ng first, second and pediatric doses,” read a Dec. 30 media release.

Starting this week, booking for booster doses are opening to people age 30 and older. Appointmen­ts can be booked for at least 168 days after completing a primary series.

Pharmacies will continue to be key in delivering COVID19 vaccine across the province.

It was also announced that in zones in the province, including the Western Zone, hybrid testing/vaccine clinics using existing Primary Assessment Centre locations will be available by mid-January. Testing and vaccine appointmen­ts will be provided at different times of day.

Drop-in mobile outreach clinics will also be deployed to increase vaccinatio­n capacity where needed.

As of Dec. 30, about 102,000 booster doses had been administer­ed in the community; with more than 25,000 delivered in other settings.

There are about 451,000 Nova Scotians age 30 and older who are or will become eligible to schedule a booster dose in January


The province announced on Dec. 28 that the holiday break for students had been extended with students returning to class on Monday, Jan. 10.

“The extended break allows families to monitor students for COVID-19 symptoms before they return to school,” read a media release. “It also allows more time for schools to ensure they have enhanced public health measures in place.”

Stronger public health measures will be introduced in all public schools. These will include strict cohorting; no large assemblies, gatherings or events; no non-essential visitors; reminding families to keep students home when they're sick; proper mask wearing and continuati­on of regular hand hygiene and enhanced cleaning.

All students will also be advised to wear the 3-ply cloth masks that were distribute­d at the start of the school year, or an equivalent. More 3-ply masks have been ordered and all staff and students will each receive an additional 3-ply mask. One and two-ply masks do not offer sufficient protection, Public Health says. Masks will continue to be required at all times indoors, except while eating and drinking.


High case numbers driven by the Omicron variant of COVID-19 have led to changes in Nova Scotia's approach to testing and case management, it was stated last week.

“Public Health is focusing its efforts on those at highest risk of severe disease and hospitaliz­ation,” read a media release. “Those not considered high risk are being asked to test at home and self-manage their case, including contacting all close contacts.”

This approach will also be extended to schools. Public Health will no longer contact trace in school settings. “Students who are sick or who are close contacts of a known case should stay home and follow public health guidance that is available online,” the media release said.

In its own media release, NSTU President Paul Wozney questioned how parents and caregivers can be assured their child's school is safe from COVID-19 if contact tracing is suspended in school settings.

“The education system was on the verge of operationa­l collapse prior to the Christmas break, and we are concerned the uncertaint­y created by the Public Health's decision to make parents responsibl­e for contract tracing will further reduce parental confidence in the system,” Wozney said.

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