Quebec COVID-19 vaccine clinics offering 2nd Pfizer doses, even if it's technically not your turn

Quebecers who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 with a single dose, but are technically not yet eligible to register on Clic Santé for their second, can still walk into a clinic and test out their luck.

The only rule is that eight weeks must have passed between the first and second dose.

"I was just in line at Bill Durnan Arena and the walk-in clinic is giving tickets to anyone for a second dose," Eugene Negrii told CTV News, adding he took a chance to see if he would be let in.

The 44-year-old says he got his second dose without any questions asked about his age.

"The lady who gave me my shot said, 'well, it's supposed to be for older or vulnerable people, but they're kind of letting anyone in -- but don't go telling your friends,'" he said.

According to Quebec's health ministry, it is, in theory, possible for people to advance their second doses, depending on the arrival of the vaccines.

"Currently, the announcement of the advancement of the second dose has been made with the confirmation of several shipments of Pfizer vaccine by the federal government," Robert Maranda, a spokesperson with the Quebec Health Ministry, told CTV News. "For people who wish to receive their second dose of AstraZeneca vaccine, they can go to a walk-in clinic."

This is, however, not the case for people who have been vaccinated with Moderna; they'll have to wait until a time slot becomes available online because there aren't enough vaccines available.

"We, therefore, invite this population to visit Clic Santé regularly to find out if time slots have been added," Maranda said. "In the event of a change in the procedure, announcements will be made in due course."

The province announced it is expecting 21,700 doses of Moderna to arrive this week, and even more next week.

"As soon as they are received, the vaccines are sent to the regions and quickly deployed in the field," Maranda notes. "We are not withholding any dose."

The Health Ministry is reminding people who received AstraZeneca as a first dose, but want a different vaccine for their second dose, that they must wait 16 weeks before being inoculated.

Advancement of the second dose is not mandatory and people are invited to keep their original scheduled dates, should they so choose. 

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