Vaccine answers for doctors

Answers for doctors

 

With COVID-19 vaccines currently being administered in BC, many of you will have questions about receiving the vaccine, the process and timing of vaccinating your patients, how doctors will be involved, and more. 

We hope that the following information answers some of those questions as BC’s Immunization Plan rolls out across our province.

Please note that the information on this web page is based on updates from the BCCDC, the Provincial Health Officer, and the provincial government.

Looking for more detailed information? Check out the BCCDC’s Qs and As for health care professionals

Info for doctors getting the vaccine

I've had my first dose. Do I need to connect with someone to arrange for my second dose?

Yes. Health care workers, including doctors, who have received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, must register on the provincial website to ensure you will be contacted for your second dose. As the provincial registration system was being built, specific clinics managed by regional health authorities were set up for healthcare workers, including doctors and their staff. Now that the provincial system is established, the data from these specialized clinics is being added to the BC-wide database. The provincial system will generate your second dose invitation, so it is critical your registration information be included on the provincial website as soon as possible.

When I am registering on the provincial vaccine registry for my second dose, how will it know that I am a doctor or health care provider?

The system knows when to send out the invitation to book your second dose because it is automatically based on the date you received your first. This is the case for everyone, whether you are a health care provider or not. 

The time between doses is currently eight weeks for all British Columbians.

Once you register, the system knows the date and vaccine you received for your first dose, and will automatically send an invitation eight weeks later so you can book your appointment for your second vaccine. 

Because health care providers got their vaccines earlier than most of the population, you will be contacted for your second dose earlier as well.

Will it be mandatory for doctors in BC to take the COVID-19 vaccine?
  • The Ministry of Health has advised It will not be mandatory for doctors and others working in the health care system to take the COVID-19 vaccine,  however; it is highly encouraged.
  • Those who decline the COVID-19 vaccination will need to continue to follow strict guidelines around health checks and the use of personal protective equipment.
I am a physician who has received my COVID-19 vaccine. If I travel to the US or abroad, am I still required to quarantine?

Yes. If you travel abroad you must follow federal quarantine rules, regardless of whether you have been immunized or not.   Currently, the rules remain the same: “Federal quarantine applies for travellers entering Canada. If you can enter Canada and you have no symptoms, you must quarantine for a minimum of 14 days. At this time, you are not excluded from quarantine, even if you have: been vaccinated for COVID-19.”   

Some members have contacted us as they feel it is time for this requirement to change. To share your concern, please connect with the national physicians’ body the Canadian Medical Association, that advocates with the federal government. You can reach them via this web page. https://www.cma.ca/contact

Info for doctors about the vaccination campaign 

How can I support my pregnant patients in getting their vaccine?
  • As pregnant people are not required to have a letter from their doctor, and can register directly for their vaccine appointment, there is no paperwork you need to complete on their behalf.
  • Your patients may come to you for advice on whether or not they should get the vaccine.
  • Click here for information from Dr Bonnie Henry and others to support conversations with patients who may come to you for advice and ongoing care.
  • The BCCDC also has information about getting vaccinated while pregnant or breastfeeding. 

 

What is the schedule for the general public to get vaccinated?

We are now in Phase 4.

Phase 4 | May - June

  • People aged 59 to 12
  • Indigenous peoples age 44 to 12

 Further information and updates are available on the BCCDC website.

What is the timing for the two doses of the vaccine?
  • The time between first and second doses of COVID-19 vaccine is eight weeks. 
  • Local and international data shows up to 90% protection three weeks after receiving the first dose of the two-dose vaccines, lasting for many months.
  • The National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI)'s recommendation aligns with BC's timeline, which has now expanded 70,000 doses to younger age groups.
  • This means all British Columbian’s can expect to  receive their first dose of the two-dose vaccines by the end of June.

 

When is immunization expected to be complete?

It is expected that everyone will have been vaccinated by the end of July. 

What role will doctors play in the delivery of the vaccine?
  • Doctors are foundational to the success of the vaccine roll-out in a number of ways:
    • Doctors and other registered health care professionals can register through the COVID-19 Emergency Health Provider Registry to administer COVID-19 vaccines (see next question for details).
    • Doctors can make a real difference in encouraging patients to get vaccinated. Research shows that the public views doctors and other health care professionals as the most credible source of information about the vaccine. Divisions and family doctors will play a critical role in supporting patients with information and advice about the vaccine, monitoring for adverse reactions, and helping with understanding of the immunization planning and process.
    • A Doctors of BC office toolkit  contains information and printable materials to support doctors in their practice and in conversations with patients. New resources are added regularly.
How can doctors register to deliver COVID-19 vaccines?
  • Doctors and other registered health care professionals who would like administer COVID-19 vaccines can register through the COVID-19 Emergency Health Provider Registry (EHPR).
  • The EHPR is a provincial resource enabling health authorities to connect with health professionals who are ready to deploy during the public health emergency.
  • Activities may include non-immunization (e.g. administrative) activities within the immunization campaign and/or other health service roles.
  • You can register online with the COVID-19 EHPR. Please fill out all fields in the online registration form as completely as possible. This will ensure health authorities are able to efficiently and appropriately contact you as needed. If you have questions about this process, please refer to the FAQs linked to the online registration form or email for assistance. Be sure to include “COVID EHPR” in the subject line.
  • Watch for information from health authorities regarding specific positions or expressions of interest, and monitor the website of your regional health authority so you can express your interest there as well.
How will physicians get compensated?
  • Physicians who deliver vaccines in large venues will likely be compensated through sessional contracts.
  • More information is available from your health authority.
When will doctors offices get vaccine supplies?
  • At this time, with the exception of some smaller communities, family practices will not be asked to administer the vaccines in their clinics. It will be much later in the process before clinics or community pharmacies are broadly used in urban areas. 
  • For this to happen, we need vaccines that do not require the same special considerations for handling, ideally require only one dose, and the provincial reporting system will need to be fully in place. 
I’m a retired doctor, how do I register to help with vaccinations?
  • Health authorities will be identifying the human resources needed to deliver vaccines in each community. 
  • Retired physicians can contact their local health authority, Contacts for Retired Physicians re Vaccine Delivery who will determine if additional doctors and other health care professionals are needed. 
  • If so, the health authority will initiate the re-registration process with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of BC. 
  • It is suggested that interested retired physicians also fill out the form on the provincial government’s emergency provider registration page. 
  • Please also review information (including FAQs) about the process of re-registration and how notification to assist would work. 
What training will doctors need to undergo before being able to administer vaccines?

Family doctors (Including residents and those holding Temporary Emergency Registration) who are doing patient assessment, vaccine preparation, immunization, and monitoring patient in post-vaccine waiting area, will be required to complete the following webinar, estimated to take about 60 minutes. The webinar is available here:

Curriculum: BCCDC COVID-19 Immunization Webinars - LearningHub (phsa.ca)

Medical students taking on any of the roles above will need to complete the BCCDC COVID-19 webinar (above) and a webinar on anaphylaxis initial emergency treatment, estimated to take 45 minutes. The webinar is available here:

Anaphylaxis Initial Emergency Treatment by Nurses (Adult & Pediatric) - LearningHub (phsa.ca)

A detailed summary of education/training requirements for all immunizers is available at here:

Clinical Immunization Roles, Scope, and Recommended/Required Education.

How do I report adverse events after vaccination?
Should women who are pregnant and breastfeeding get the vaccine?

The response to this question can be found here

Related: COVID-19 vaccine FAQs for patients


Do you have questions that are not included on this page? Email us at .

We will regularly update and share common questions and answers as new information becomes available.