The World Forum - April 24th, 2024

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Canada to re-examine definition of fully vaccinated against COVID-19 once more people have had booster shots


The Public Health Agency of Canada will review how many COVID-19 vaccine doses are needed to be considered fully vaccinated once more people have been boosted, leaving open the possibility the additional shot could become a requirement.

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam told a virtual news conference on Friday that the federal agency will re-examine the definition of fully vaccinated, but she didn’t provide a timeline for that review.

Any change could have significant implications for people travelling interprovincially or internationally because the federally-imposed vaccine mandate for air and rail travel is based on just the primary series of a vaccine, which depending on the vaccine is either two shots or one. The same definition is used for the vaccine mandate for the federal civil service, Canadian Armed Forces, and RCMP.

Dr. Tam said the federal public health agency is changing its terminology for COVID-19 vaccinations and now describes getting a booster shot as being “up to date” with your COVID-19 vaccinations. She also said Friday the global consensus on COVID-19 is that it will be “with us for some time” but that for now in Canada it appears that the Omicron wave has peaked.