News Updates

Aug 19, 2021

Ontario Announces Mandatory COVID Vaccination Policies for High-Risk Settings

To protect vulnerable patients and staff in settings where the risk of contracting and transmitting COVID-19 and the Delta variant is higher, the Chief Medical Officer of Health has issued Directive #6 mandating hospitals and home and community care service providers to have a COVID-19 vaccination policy for employees, staff, contractors, students and volunteers, and for ambulance services to have a COVID-19 vaccination policy for paramedics.

The vaccination policy must be in effect no later than September 7, 2021, and at a minimum will require these individuals to provide proof of one of three things:

  • Full vaccination against COVID-19;
  • A medical reason for not being vaccinated against COVID-19; or
  • Completion of a COVID-19 vaccination educational session.

Individuals can prove they are fully vaccinated by showing the physical or emailed receipt that was provided to them at the time of vaccination. Vaccination receipts can also be downloaded or printed through the provincial portal or by calling the Provincial Vaccine Booking Line at 1-833-943-3900. This version of the vaccine receipt contains a watermark and a digital signature to deter forgery.

Individuals who do not provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 will be required to undertake regular antigen testing. These settings will be required to track and report on the implementation of their policies to the provincial government. This is similar to the vaccination policy requirements currently in place for long-term care homes.

This new directive alerts all physiotherapists that they will need to understand and adhere to the policies set out by their employer. This may impact some physiotherapists in leadership roles who may also be involved in the implementation of this new directive.

PTs who work for hospitals and community care service providers are encouraged to speak with their employer about this new directive and how this impacts them and their role.

The province has also paused the exit from the roadmap to re-open and will start offering third doses of the COVID vaccine to Ontario’s most vulnerable populations.

View the announcement from the Ontario government here.

Also read the Ontario government's Resource Guide for Directive #6 for more information.