Toronto offers Novavax vaccines to residents 18 years of age and older starting April 21

Toronto Public Health says it will begin offering Novavax vaccines to residents 18 years and older at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre vaccination clinic starting April 21.

The vaccine, which can be booked through the Toronto Public Health website or through a doctor’s referral, will be offered on Thursdays at the convention centre.

People who are 18 years of age and older are able to receive the Novavax vaccine if they have an allergy or contraindication to an mRNA vaccine.

“Individuals can also get Novavax vaccine if they have decided not to receive an mRNA vaccine. Residents with allergies may discuss their situation with their primary care provider,” the City of Toronto said in a news release on Thursday.

Officials said the vaccine is a “protein subunit” vaccine that uses small pieces of a protein to teach our immune system to make antibodies that recognize and fight COVID-19. It is similar to how many influenza vaccines work, officials said.

“While the National Advisory Committee on Immunization continues to strongly recommend the use of mRNA COVID-19 vaccines for most people due to their excellent protection against COVID-19, the Novavax vaccine is a new option for those who have been unable or unwilling to receive an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine,” the city officials said.

“The Novavax vaccine has been proven to be highly effective in preventing COVID-19 disease in the short term, and lowers the risk of serious consequences linked to COVID-19.”

The Novavax vaccine, which was approved by Health Canada in February 2022, requires two doses that need to be administer eight weeks apart in order to guarantee the best COVID-19 protection.

“Similar to the mRNA vaccines, it takes two weeks after vaccination for residents to be fully protected from COVID-19,” officials said. “Novavax can be used for any of the first two doses or as a booster, even if the previous vaccine was different.”

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