National expert panel recommends four-month interval between doses of COVID-19 vaccine

Would free up vaccine for other Canadians sooner with no adverse impact

Several provinces, Ontario included, have indicated they will follow the recommendation of the National Advisory Committee on Immunization and extend the interval between doses of covid vaccine from two months to four months.

The committee says it can be done without diluting the effectiveness of the vaccine and would free up more of it for other Canadians sooner.

The first dose, the committee notes, becomes stronger with time; the second dose is what makes immunity more durable.

The recommendation applies to all three coronavirus vaccines available in Canada.

“This will allow Ontario to rapidly accelerate its vaccine rollout and get as many vaccines into arms as quickly as possible and, in doing so, provide more protection to more people,” Alexandra Hilkene, a spokesperson for Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott, said in a statement.

British Columbia announced a four-month interval on Monday. As a result, it says its mass vaccination program will be completed two months earlier.