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Vaccines without an OHIP card – Service in Spanish is provided

Loly Rico and Francisco Rico, co-directors in FCJ Refugee Centre. Photo: FCJ

The city of Toronto, the FCJ Refugee Center, and the Access Alliance are joining forces so that people without an Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) card can get the Covid-19 vaccine in Ontario.

Mayor John Tory assured that “the city is committed to ensuring equitable access to Covid-19 vaccines for all.” And the same conditions operate for the rest of the province of Ontario. “Covid-19 does not care whether or not you have an OHIP card. The virus can infect anyone and then it can be transmitted to anyone else it comes into contact with.”, Tory said in a media release.

Residents without OHIP cards who meet current vaccine eligibility criteria can make a vaccination appointment at a city-operated immunization clinic by contacting the FCJ Refugee Center (where they speak Spanish), Access Alliance (where you can request an interpreter in Spanish) or directly through the Toronto Public Health Hotline.

Mayor of Toronto John Tory. Photo: Twitter

Equitable treatment for all

Toronto, home to more than 2.9 million people, is the most diverse city in the country, so the announcement was viewed as positive.

Eileen de Villa, Medical Health Officer, said: “The announcement is good news and an important step towards a fair process that guarantees that all those who want a vaccine, regardless of their immigration status, can obtain it.”

For his part, Joe Cressy, Councilor for Spadina-Fort York and Chairman of the Board of Health, said that “every Toronto resident, no matter where they live, what language they speak or what status they have, needs access to a vaccine. To defeat this pandemic, we must be united. “

Thanks to the city’s response to community needs, no one will be left behind, said Francisco Rico-Martinez, co-director, FCJ Refugee Center. “Our doors at the FCJ refugee center are open to protect everyone regardless of immigration status. Here everyone has free access to the vaccine, “he added.

Michael Thompson (Scarborough Center), Chairman of the Community and Economic Development Committee, conceded that local agencies play an important role in supporting people in vulnerable communities throughout Toronto. Helping non-OHIP residents book appointments is essential to a successful vaccination campaign.”

According to de Villa, “lowering the bar of requirements” to obtain the vaccine increases the number of vaccinated people who reside here. “Thanks to the partner agencies for working together with us,” she added.

Appointments to get the Covid-19 vaccine without OHIP:

FCJ Refugee Centre

  • Telephone: 416-469-9754 ext. 230 and 232; WhatsApp: 437-217-3786 (Monday to Friday: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.)
  • Email: vaccine@fcjrefugeecentre.org
  • In-person booking (by appointment only) at 208 Oakwood Avenue
  • Phone interpretation services are available as needed

Access Alliance

  • Telephone: 416-760-8677
    • Monday, Tuesday, Friday: 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
    • Wednesday: 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
    • Thursday: 12:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
  • In person booking (by appointment only) at 761 Jane Street location
  • Phone interpretation services are available as needed

Toronto Public Health Hotline

  • Telephone: 416-338-7600; TTY: 416-392-0658 (8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily)

What identity documents can be shown?

Residents without an OHIP card can use other forms of identification to book their Covid-19 vaccination appointment to show partner agencies, including a driver’s license, passport, certified mail, pay stub, or student card.

Government issued identification from other jurisdictions and countries can also be used, including a passport, driver’s license, or health card, even if they are expired.

Residents without an OHIP card can also book their appointment through hospitals and clinics run by the Ontario Health Team, at vacunato.ca

Absolute confidentiality

As part of our commitment to serving all residents, personal information collected when making a vaccination appointment is kept to a minimum as required by the provincial reservation system, and does not include a home address.

Safe administration of Ontario’s Covid-19 vaccination program requires the creation of a medical record that includes the person’s full name, age, gender, and a phone number or email address.

Personal health information cannot be used for other purposes without the consent of the individual, in accordance with the Personal Health Information Protection Act:  www.ontario.ca/laws/statute/04p03

For more information, visit the city’s website or on its social media accounts: Twitter, Instagram y Facebook.

By Silvia Méndez

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