Changes to Halton Regional Centre pickup of vaccine orders
Starting the week of Monday, March 23, 2020, all vaccine orders submitted for pickup at the Halton Regional Centre will be available Tuesdays between 8 a.m. and 10 a.m. only, until further notice.
Use the vaccine order form to request influenza, routine, high-risk and school-based vaccines. Temperature logs must be submitted with all orders.
When picking up vaccines, please check in at main reception and ensure that you bring:
- A pre-cooled, hard-sided cooler;
- An electronic device that measures temperatures between 2 and 8 degrees Celsius; and
- Ice packs and a water blanket inside the cooler.
Recent inspections of refrigerators in health care provider premises have shown that improper storage of vaccines is a significant problem in Ontario. Under the authority of the Health Protection and Promotion Act, public health units must inspect storage locations of provincially funded vaccines.
The purpose of annual inspections is to:
- Ensure the proper management of vaccine inventories (store in temperatures of 2-8 degrees Celsius)
- Provide education strategies to minimize vaccine wastage
- Promote vaccine safety and effectiveness
If you are a health care provider storing provincially funded vaccines, ensure all staff familiarize themselves with proper vaccine storage and handling guidelines (PDF file)
Proper Vaccine Storage procedures
- Read, record and clear the min/max thermometer twice per day in the temperature log book.
- Post the Ministry cold chain material on the fridge door.
- Close and secure fridge door after each use.
- Place water bottles on inside of fridge door to maintain proper temperatures.
- Ensure no ice has built up in the freezer.
- Place thermometer probe in the center of the fridge in an empty vaccine box.
- Store vaccines on the middle shelf.
- Date all opened multi-dose vials.
- Protect all vaccine from light.
- Keep refrigerator plugged in at all times.
NOTE: Do not store food or specimens in the vaccine fridge.
What to Do With Spoiled or Expired Vaccines
- Report all fridge temperatures outside the 2-8 degrees Celcius range to the Health Department immediately
- Return all expired/exposed vaccine to the Health Department
- Prior to moving or changing vaccine fridges, notify the Health Department
Report a vaccine storage failure by calling 311 or fill out the applicable form below.
A parent or guardian may decide against vaccinating their child for medical or personal reasons. Choose the necessary exemption form for your patient from the list below.
Please remind patients that by law, parents wishing to exempt their children from vaccines because of personal choice, must attend an in-person education session on vaccines at the Health Department.
Influenza vaccine distribution
Health care providers taking part in the 2020/2021 Universal Influenza Immunization Program (external link) will first receive the influenza vaccine in two predetermined amounts. These allotments can be administered to the general population, not just high-risk populations.
Initial flu allocation is anticipated to be sent in early October by courier. Please check back regularly for updates. Information will also be shared through an e-fax.
Halton Region Public Health will accept orders the week of October 26, 2020 for additional doses of influenza vaccine. Orders submitted prior to this date will not be processed. Influenza vaccine orders must be submitted through the online vaccine order form, and must include a copy of your recent fridge temperature log. Faxed orders will no longer be accepted.
To limit in-person vaccine order pick-ups at the Halton Regional Centre, Halton Region Public Health is exploring vaccine delivery options to providers. Our team will provide advance notice of any changes to the current process.
For information on this year’s influenza immunization program, visit the Ministry of Health’s 2020/2021 Universal Influenza Immunization Program webpage (external link) and read the National Advisory Committee of Immunization statement (external link).
Updated Eligibility for Routine Vaccines
Children ages 4-6 years old who need both a second dose of MMR AND a second dose of chickenpox vaccine may receive this vaccine. (Children under 4 as well as those receiving either antigen for the 1st time should receive the antigens separately.)
In Ontario, the rotavirus vaccine is publicly funded for infants 6 - 24 weeks of age. The following dosing schedule is recommended:
- First dose at 2 months of age
- Second dose 4 months of age
- Third dose at 6 months of age
All rotavirus vaccine doses should be given by 32 weeks of age.
The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care has expanded Ontario’s Human Papillomavirus (HPV4) Immunization Program. Changes include:
- Offering HPV4 vaccine to all boys and girls in grade 7 from the 2016-17 school year and going forward.
- Ongoing eligibility for females until the end of August after grade 12
- Ongoing eligibility for males who were in grade 7 in the 2016-17 school year until the end of August after grade 12
Vaccines are offered at Halton regional immunization clinics by appointment. Patients should call 311 to schedule an appointment.
Important information regarding Halton Public Health school programs
- Until further notice, Halton Region Public Health has temporarily suspended all school health programs. This includes:
- cancellation of suspensions and enforcement related to the Immunization of School Pupils Act (ISPA) for children born in 2010-2012;
- vaccine education sessions for parents and guardians;
- immunization and oral health clinics; and
- school health promotion activities performed by public health nurses.
- Please check back regularly for updates.
In Ontario, routine immunizations are mainly given in family doctor’s offices. However, Halton Region also offers Community Immunization Clinics for school-based immunizations.
- All vaccines in the childhood routine schedule
- Diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio and Hib; measles, mumps and rubella; chickenpox; pneumococcal conjugate; Men C
- Tdap: All adults up to the age of 64 can receive one life-time dose.
- Eligible school-aged children who missed their school-based clinic:
- Hepatitis B
- Menactra (Meningococcal ACYW-135)
- Gardasil (HPV)
- These are all the vaccines that are included in the publicly funded schedule.
Vaccines offered for a fee:
- The Health Department does not provide these vaccines.
Reducing Vaccine Injection Pain in Children
Reporting an Adverse Event Following Immunization
As a health care provider, the law requires you to report an adverse event following an immunization. Do your part to monitor adverse events by following these three easy steps:
- Advise patients to contact you if they experience an unwanted and unexpected health effect after receiving a vaccine.
- Report adverse events to your local public health unit. Use the Report of Adverse Event Following Immunization Reporting Form. (external PDF)
- If you have questions, contact your local public health unit.
Once you have completed the reporting form, fax it to 905-825-8797.