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VCH expands vaccine program to include Whistler adults of all ages

Adults aged 55 and up are now included in the community vaccination campaign

Whistler adults of any age are now eligible to receive their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine if they haven't already, announced Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) on Wednesday, April 14. 

Starting today, local adults 18 and over who work or have a primary residence in Whistler can book an appointment online to receive a Moderna or Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at VCH's immunization clinic at the Whistler Conference Centre. 

Initially, Whistler's mass vaccination campaign, which launched April 12, was open to adults between 18 and 54 years old. Whistlerites aged 55 to 64 were only eligible for the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines that were already available and being administered to that age group in local pharmacies.

Last month, B.C. suspended use of the AstraZeneca vaccine in people under age 55 due to concerns about a possible link between the shot and extremely rare instances of blood clots. On April 14, Health Canada said that although there is enough evidence to support claims the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine may rarely cause blood clots, the shot is still extremely safe, effective and will remain on the Canadian market

The vaccination clinic at the Whistler Conference Centre is open April 14 to 18 from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. VCH is aiming to vaccinate all those eligible during this period. 

What to bring to your COVID-19 vaccine appointment in Whistler

Eligible adults will have to provide proof of their permanent Whistler address—such as a driver's license or credit card statement—or present a recent paystub for those who work locally but live outside of the community. 

The Whistler vaccination program was launched last weekend in response to increasing COVID-19 transmission recorded in the community in recent weeks. Currently, the Howe Sound health region is still listed as having the highest rate of COVID-19 per population of any Local Health Area across British Columbia. The majority of these cases reside in the Whistler community. 

- With files from Megan Lalonde and the Canadian Press