When can we expect the coronavirus vaccine? Doctor answers COVID-19 questions

The administration of COVID-19 vaccinations is now underway in each province — but some of us are still left confused about the rollouts and restrictions.

Infectious disease specialist Isaac Bogoch recently joined The Morning Show to answer all your vaccine-related questions.

Read more: Ontario to delay 2nd vaccine dose until up to 42 days due to Pfizer shipment delivery pause

Though Pfizer-BioNtech shipments to Canada are currently delayed, Bogoch says there aren’t any long-term impacts on the vaccine rollout plan.

In the short-term, he adds, programs won’t be able to expand as quickly.

“Limited resources are really going to be focused on those with greatest need — and that really is in the long-term care facilities,” said Bogoch.

People outside of long-term care can expect to receive vaccines in the springtime or by late summer, he adds.

“We’re going to start to see the taps really turn on sometime in the spring,” said Bogoch.

Read more: Canada passed on 16 million Moderna coronavirus vaccine doses due to timeline: minister

Canada is receiving vaccine shipments from both Pfizer and Moderna.

After someone receives their first vaccination, the second dose is ideally administered after 21 days for the Pfizer vaccine and 28 days for the Moderna.

Though people can expect delays on their second dose, Bogoch says they will still have significant protection after their first.

“People will start to get some degree of protection about 12 or so days after dose one,” he said, emphasizing that everyone will still need to get two doses in total.

Read more: 64% of Canadians in favour of mandatory coronavirus vaccines: poll

In regard to COVID-19 variants that have been detected in Canada, Bogoch says depending on where you are in the country, the variants are not likely driving the infection rates.

“But we still have to be careful,” he said, adding that he doesn’t think anyone should be brushing this under the rug.

Alberta and B.C. both had spikes in positive COVID-19 cases in November 2020, but are now seeing a significantly reduced number of cases after implementing tighter restrictions, Bogoch says.

As Alberta plans on easing restrictions, B.C. is considering closing its borders.

Bogoch says the strategies aren’t “mutually exclusive” and we still have to take steps to prevent transmission within the provinces.

“But of course if you have seen a significant benefit from the restrictions that you have, then you can open up in a very safe manner,” he said.

Read more: Inside the hunt for coronavirus variants in Canada

Lastly, Bogoch says people can still get the virus and spread it after getting the vaccine, but your illness will probably be less severe.

“Based on some of the studies we’re seeing, if you’re unlucky enough to get the infection after vaccination, you’re still more likely to have a less severe illness,” he said.

For more information about the vaccine and lockdown restrictions, watch the full video above

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