More than 50% of eligible people in B.C. have received first vaccine dose

MORE than 50% of all eligible people in B.C. have received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, the Province announced on Wednesday.

Building on that momentum, Premier John Horgan is calling for everyone to register for vaccination and help friends, family and neighbours to do the same.

“We’ve made extraordinary progress together over the past few weeks toward everyone getting their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine,” said Horgan. “COVID-19 has turned our lives upside down, but this milestone gives us hope of better days ahead. We have to keep going. We need all British Columbians to help make sure as many people as possible get their shots. Register today and talk to your friends, family and neighbours and make sure they’re registered, too.”

Once people are registered, they will get an email or text notification when it is their turn to book an appointment. Anyone not already registered should register now in one of three ways:

* 24/7, online:

* through a provincial call centre between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. (Pacific time) at 1 833 838-2323, or

* in person at the nearest Service BC location.

People who do not have a personal health number can register by phone or in person. Translations are available in over 140 languages over the phone.

With more than one million doses arriving this month, B.C. is making quick progress in its immunization plan and everyone in B.C. needs to do their part to protect people and communities by helping others getting vaccinated. Workers in B.C. are eligible for up to three hours of paid leave to get each dose of their COVID-19 vaccine.

“I invite British Columbians to join together and help us reach the next vaccine milestone – 60% of people vaccinated,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health. “B.C. has the vaccines, the clinics and the workers. Register. Get vaccinated. Speak with your friends and families. Help get them registered.”

B.C.’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout is the largest and most complex immunization program in the province’s history, with more than 2,162,023 people in B.C. already having received a first dose of vaccine by May 12. More than 2.5 million people in B.C. have registered since the Get Vaccinated provincial registration and booking system was launched on April 6.

“Vaccines are the light at the end of the tunnel in this pandemic, and that light is growing brighter by the day,” said Dr. Bonnie Henry, Provincial Health Officer. “By getting vaccinated when it is your turn and helping others register so they can do the same, we can protect our loved ones, our communities and ourselves from COVID-19.”

To register online, people need:

* their personal health number (found on their CareCard or on the back of their driver’s licence or BC Services Card);

* postal code;

* first and last names;

* date of birth; and

* an email address that gets checked regularly or a phone number that can receive text messages.

“Regardless of whether you got your first dose through a pharmacy, through your workplace as a priority worker, through a clinic of any kind, or by booking a first dose through a health authority call centre, people must now register through the Get Vaccinated system,” said Dr. Penny Ballem, executive lead for B.C.’s immunization efforts. “Getting every person registered is vital to our immunization efforts in B.C. If you aren’t sure whether you have registered already or have been registered, register now to help public health get you your doses of vaccine.”