How to book a COVID-19 vaccine appointment on Vancouver Island

The province's new vaccination appointment booking system launched Tuesday, April 6. Here's what you need to know.

Registering and booking an appointment

You will need to register first, then book your appointment.

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Step 1: Register online at gov.bc.ca/getvaccinated, by calling 1-833-838-2323, or by going to a Service B.C. location. You will receive a confirmation number, which will be required to book your appointment.

You should only register when it is your turn. The phone line will be open seven days a week, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. starting on April 6.

Step 2: Book your appointment. You will get an email, text or phone call telling you when you are eligible to book your appointment. This is based on age.

Appointments will be booked online or by phone. You will be able to select a location, date and time.

When you can register

The new system launched on April 6.

People are asked to register only when they are eligible. Registration dates are based on age. Check gov.bc.ca/getvaccinated to see when you can register.

As of April 20 at noon, non-Indigenous people age 35 and older (born in 1966 and earlier), Indigenous people 18 and older, and those who are clinically extremely vulnerable — and have received a letter inviting them to book a vaccination — are eligible to register.

Here are this week's dates:

• Born in 1981 or earlier (age 40+) — Registration opens April 19 at noon.

• Born in 1986 or earlier (age 35+) — Registration opens April 20 at noon.

• Born in 1991 or earlier (age 30+) — Registration opens April 21 at noon.

• Born in 1996 or earlier (age 25+) — Registration opens April 22 at noon.

• Born in 2003 or earlier (age 18+) — Registration opens April 23 at noon.

What you will need

To register you will need to provide your name, date of birth, postal code, and Personal Health Number. Your Personal Health Number can be found on the back of your B.C. Services Card or driver’s licence. It is the number that was on Care Cards.

You will also be asked to provide an email address that gets checked regularly or a phone number that can receive texts.

You will never be asked you for your social insurance number, driver's licence number or banking and credit card details.

AstraZeneca vaccine availability

People 40 and older are eligible to book an appointment to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine at a participating pharmacy near them. The locations of participating pharmacies can be found here.

What if I have already received my first dose?

People who have already received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine through a health authority call centre will receive information in May about when and how to register for a second dose.

Clinic locations

Vaccinations will take place in a variety of settings, including larger venues — such as the University of Victoria and Archie Browing Centre in Esquimalt — to smaller public health units in Tofino and the Comox Valley. The clinics will generally operate from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Seniors are permitted to bring a support person.

Clinic locations should be within about 15 minutes of your residence. The opening dates of the clinics vary and may change, said Island Health. Check their website for the most up-to-date information.

• Campbell River — Campbell River Community Centre, 401 11 Ave.

• Comox — Glacier Gardens Arena, 1399 Military Row, Comox

• Courtenay — Comox Valley Hospital (ambulance bay), 101 Lerwick Rd.

• Duncan — Cowichan Community Centre Gym, 2687 James St.

• Esquimalt — Archie Browning Sports Centre, 1151 Esquimalt Rd.

• Ladysmith — Aggie Hall, 1110 1st Ave.

• Langford — Victoria Eagle Ridge Arena, 1089 Langford Pkwy.

• Nanaimo — Cedar Community Centre, 2388 Cedar Rd.

• Nanaimo — Beban Park, 2300 Bowen Rd.

• Parksville — Parksville Community Centre, 132 Jensen Ave E.

• Port Alberni — Port Alberni Friendship Centre, 3555 4th Ave.

• Port Alberni — Alberni Athletic Hall, 3727 Roger St.

• Port Alice — Port Alice Health Unit, 1090 Marine Dr.

• Port Hardy — Port Hardy Health Unit, 7070 Market St.

• Port McNeill — Port McNeill Health Unit, 1775 Grenville Pl.

• Qualicum Beach — Qualicum Beach Civic Centre, 747 Jones St.

• Saanich — University of Victoria, McKinnon Gym, 11 Gabriola Rd.

• Salt Spring Island — Salt Spring Island public health unit, 160 Fulford-Ganges Rd. (until April 6)

• Salt Spring Island — ArtSpring Centre, 100 Jackson Ave. (starting April 7)

• Sidney — Mary Winspear Centre, 2243 Beacon Ave.

• Sooke — SEAPARC Leisure Complex, 2168 Phillips Rd.

• Tofino — Tofino Public Health Unit 265 First St.

• Victoria — Victoria Native Friendship Centre, 231 Regina Ave.

• Victoria — Victoria Conference Centre, 720 Douglas St.

Smaller communities

Approximately 30 smaller and remote communities without immunization clinics will be vaccinated in what the health authority calls a “whole of community approach.”

Small and remote communities, those with 4,000 and under, which involve ferry or air travel, for instance, may see the entire adult population vaccinated during a single visit in one or two consecutive days or two separate visits.

These communities include: Bamfield, Cortes Island, Denman Island, Gabriola Island, Galiano Island, Gold River, Hornby Island, Kyuquot, Lasqueti Island, Mayne Island, North Pender Island, Penelakut, Port Alice, Port Hardy, Port McNeil, Port Renfrew/Jordan River, Quadra Island, Read Island, Saturna Island, Sayward, Sointula, South Pender Island, Tahsis, Thetis Island, Tofino, Ucluelet, and Zeballos.

Island Health has released a schedule of clinics for these communities.

What to expect at your appointment

Appointments last about 30 minutes, which includes a 15-minute waiting period following the administration of the vaccine.

Wearing short sleeves makes it easier to get the vaccine. Do not forget to bring a face mask.

A support person can accompany you to the vaccine clinic.

An average of 12 vaccinations will be delivered an hour per vaccination station. Shots are being administered by public health nurses, with other health professionals trained on vaccinations ready to start up when volumes increase

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