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Here's how to get your COVID-19 booster dose in York Region

Doses are now available for eligible groups only by appointment at Newmarket community clinic, pharmacies
20200109 york region admin centre 3
York Region Administrative Centre in Newmarket. Supplied photo/Region of York

York Region Public Health is now offering COVID-19 booster doses for vulnerable populations by appointment only.

York joined the rest of the province Nov. 6 in offering third-dose COVID-19 vaccinations for certain populations who have had at least six months since their last dose. Appointments are available at the York Region Administrative Centre in Newmarket and participating pharmacies. 

Acting medical officer of health Dr. Richard Gould is encouraging eligible residents to get the doses. 

"These groups will benefit from a booster dose as they are at increased risks of waning immunity, and greater risk of exposure, severe illness and severe outcomes,” Gould said in his weekly video update. “Offering the extra layer of protection provided by a (third dose) will contribute to the fight against COVID-19.”

The eligible groups include individuals aged 70 and older, health-care workers and essential caregivers in congregate settings, Indigenous adults, and individuals who received either the AstraZeneca or Johnson and Johnson vaccine. All groups must have had at least six months since their last dose.

Appointments can be booked through the regional portal, with spots also available at clinics in Markham, Georgina, Richmond Hill and Vaughan. The York Region centre at 17250 Yonge St. is the only Newmarket clinic run by public health, but the booking system also includes local pharmacies. 

Gould said booster dose eligibility will likely be expanding in the new year. 

Walk-ins are still available for those seeking a first or a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Meanwhile, York Region Public Health is readying to deliver the COVID-19 vaccine to children ages five to 11. Gould said he expects that to start later this month. The province has indicated it has received rollout plans from all public health units.

“We have been working diligently with the Ontario government, York Region school boards and hospital partners to prepare,” Gould said. “Every effort will be made to make the vaccination process as comfortable as possible for children and families, including support to reduce anxiety and vaccine-related fears.”

He noted parents will have to provide permission for children to get the vaccine.

Vaccine booking information is available at