Press release: Toronto Hospitals and Ontario Health Teams launch COVID-19 Vaccine Call Centre and Website
(March 8, 2021) Toronto, ON – Toronto hospitals and their partner Ontario Health Teams (OHTs) joined forces today to launch a centralized COVID-19 call centre and website to support eligible adults in Toronto to pre-register or book their vaccination appointments. The Toronto COVID-19 Vaccine Call Centre and Website (www.vaccineto.ca) will be one central place to support priority populations identified as part of Phase I in the Ontario Vaccine Distribution Plan.
- People who are 80 years of age and older (born in 1941 or before)
- Health care workers in priority risk groups
- Indigenous adults (16 years and older)
- Adults receiving on-going home care
“We know seniors 80 years and older have been waiting for this moment and we are so thrilled this tool will help them book their vaccination appointment, close to home,” says Dr. Tim Rutledge, President and CEO of Unity Health Toronto and Executive Lead, Communications Group, Toronto Health Sector Vaccine Leadership Table. “This Call Centre was mobilized by Toronto hospitals and their Ontario Health Team partners and is an important step in our collective fight to stop the spread of COVID-19.”
People from these priority groups can now go to www.vaccineto.ca or toronto.ca/covid19 to access the pre-registration or appointment booking systems for sites near to them. People can also call 1-888-385-1910 for assistance to complete pre-registration forms and book appointments at local vaccine clinics operated by participating hospitals and OHTs. In the initial days of operating the Toronto COVID-19 Vaccine Call Centre callers should expect longer wait times or difficulty connecting due to an anticipated high volume of calls. Residents are asked not to call individual hospital and patience is appreciated.
Toronto hospitals and OHTs are also working closely with the City of Toronto to ensure residents of Toronto within the current eligible priority group are informed about their options to receive a COVID-19 vaccination through daily updates of vaccine clinics planned in their community, as well as vaccines administered by hospitals and OHTs.
“This is all part of the Team Toronto effort underway across the city to get eligible residents vaccinated. I want to thank our hospital partners, Ontario Health Teams, and Toronto Public Health for their ongoing work to distribute the current vaccine supply,” said Toronto Mayor John Tory. “We are ready to ramp up these efforts when more supply becomes available from the Government of Canada.”
“Family doctors and nurse practitioners care for patients across Toronto so having one website and one number to sign up their patients for vaccination will be a tremendous benefit,” said Dr. David Kaplan of the North York Family Health Team & Co-Chair, Health Human Resources Group, Toronto Health Sector Vaccine Leadership Table. “We want to make it as easy and convenient as possible for all adults in Toronto to get vaccinated, starting with those at greatest risk of contracting and falling ill from COVID-19.”
“Toronto hospitals along with primary care and home and community care partners and Toronto Public Health are working non-stop to get the vaccine into the arms of community members,” said Rudy Dahdal, Vice President, Planning, Redevelopment and Clinical Support at North York General Hospital and Co-Chair of the Logistics and Distribution Group, Toronto Health Sector Vaccine Leadership Table. “This Call Centre and Website will help older adults, starting with those 80 and over, and vulnerable community members get a vaccination appointment as soon as possible.”
About Hospital-Ontario Health Team Vaccination Clinics in Toronto
With the steady increase in the COVID-19 vaccine supply in Ontario, Toronto hospitals and Ontario Health Teams are rapidly moving forward with vaccinating the adult population, starting with priority groups as established by the Ministry of Health. Eventually, COVID-19 vaccination will be available to the general population in Toronto in accordance with supply and in alignment with Ontario’s Vaccine Distribution Plan and Toronto Public Health.
COVID-19 vaccinations in Toronto are by appointment only and there are no walk-in clinics at this time. Eligible individuals should only sign up at one vaccination clinic site and are asked to not pre-register or book appointments at multiple locations. Individuals are also encouraged to pre-register or book an appointment at the clinics nearest to where they live and, in the case of health care workers, closest to where they work.
DO NOT MAKE MULTIPLE BOOKINGS OR ALL BOOKINGS MAY BE CANCELLED.
In addition to booking appointments at hospital-Ontario Health Team community clinics, mobile clinics, pop-up vaccination sites and other approaches are being used to vaccinate populations in Phase 1 who are not able to travel to clinics including residents of long-term care and high-risk retirement homes and essential caregivers (vaccination began in January), those experiencing homelessness, seniors living in congregate settings, and adults receiving on-going home care including those who may be homebound.
COVID-19 Vaccination Call Centre and Website: Participating hospitals and Ontario Health Teams
- Humber River Hospital and the North Western Toronto Ontario Health Team
- Michael Garron Hospital and East Toronto Health Partners
- North York General Hospital and North York Toronto Health Partners
- Scarborough Health Network and Scarborough Ontario Health Team
- Sinai Health, Toronto Grace Health Centre, University Health Network and Women’s College Hospital and Mid-West Toronto Ontario Health Team
- Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and North Toronto Ontario Health Team
- Unity Health Toronto – St. Michael’s Hospital, St. Joseph’s Health Centre, West Toronto Ontario Health Team and Downtown East Toronto Ontario Health Team
Media contacts: Michael Garron HospitalErica Di Maio – email@example.com North York General Hospital
Melissa Londono – Melissa.firstname.lastname@example.org Unity Health TorontoHayley Mick – Communications@unityhealth.to