Immunizations (or vaccinations) are a safe and the most effective way to prevent many serious diseases.
Renfrew County and District Health Unit (RCDHU) offers immunization services to people who live, work and attend school in Ontario.
For current RCDHU’s Immunization Clinics being offered please call 613-732-3629 ext. 509.
RCD COVID-19 Vaccine Communications Committee News Briefs
- COVID-19 Vaccine News Brief – Edition 1 (Feb 19, 2021)
- COVID-19 Vaccine News Brief – Edition 2 (March 02, 2021)
RCD COVID-19 Vaccine Communications Committee Media Releases
- COVID-19 Vaccination Update for Renfrew County and District (Feb 26, 2021)
RCDHU COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution and Administration Plan (Feb 12, 2021)
The provincial government has developed a three-phase implementation plan and is currently in Phase One. The province announced that Ontario will roll out the vaccines in three phases, focusing first on vulnerable populations that are at greatest risk of COVID-19. The key populations that will be first to receive the COVID-19 vaccine are as follows:
Immediate priorities for first doses include:
- staff, essential caregivers and any residents that have not yet received a first dose in:
- long-term care homes
- high-risk retirement homes
- First Nations elder care homes
- alternative level of care patients in hospitals who have a confirmed admission to a long-term care home, retirement home or other congregate care home for seniors
- health care workers identified as highest priority, followed by very high priority, in the Ministry of Health’s guidance on Health Care Worker Prioritization (PDF)
- Indigenous adults in northern remote and higher risk communities (on-reserve and urban)
When all reasonable steps have been taken to complete first doses of the vaccine for all interested individuals in the immediate category, first doses will be available to the remainder of the Phase 1 populations.
- adults 80 years of age and older
- staff, residents and caregivers in retirement homes and other congregate care settings for seniors (for example, assisted living)
- health care workers identified as the high priority level in the Ministry of Health’s guidance on Health Care Worker Prioritization (PDF)
- all Indigenous adults
- adult recipients of chronic home care
The province has mapped out the next steps for transitioning into Phase Two and has adopted an approach for identifying the next groups to receive the vaccination from April to July 2021, depending on availability of vaccines. Groups eligible to receive vaccines as part of Phase Two of the Ontario immunization program will include:
- Older adults, beginning with those 80 years of age and older and decreasing in five-year increments over the course of the vaccine rollout;
- People who live and work in high-risk congregate settings (for example, shelters, community living)
- Frontline essential workers (e.g., first responders, teachers, food processing industry)
- Individuals with high-risk chronic conditions and their caregivers
- Other populations and communities facing barriers related to the determinants of health across Ontario who are at greater COVID-19 risk
Phase Three for the general population could begin as early as August 2021, pending availability of vaccines. Vaccination of populations in Phase One will continue until all vaccinations are complete.
This accordion will be updated as more information becomes available.
RCDHU Resource – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about the COVID-19 Vaccine
RCDHU Webpage Link – Visit RCDHU’s COVID-19 page for more information
Government of Ontario Link – What you should know about the COVID-19 vaccines
Government of Ontario Link – COVID-19 vaccines for Ontario
Government of Ontario Link – COVID-19 vaccine safety
Government of Ontario Link – Getting a COVID-19 vaccine in Ontario
Government of Ontario Link – Ontario Releases Ethical Framework for COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution
Government of Ontario Link – General information about vaccines and immunizations
Government of Canada Link – What you need to know about the COVID-19 vaccine for Canada
Government of Canada Link – Vaccines and treatments for COVID-19: Progress
Government of Canada Link – Vaccine development and approval in Canada infographic
Government of Canada Video Link – COVID-19: How vaccines are developed
Immunization Connect Ontario (ICON) tool
You can now update, view and/or print your child’s immunization record through the ICON portal. ICON is a secure tool for submitting updates and viewing your or your child’s immunization information on file at RCDHU.
In order to access your child’s immunization information using ICON you will need to create an account and set a PIN. To do this, you will need the following information:
- You or your child’s Ontario Health Card (which must already be on file with the health unit)
- You or your child’s Ontario Immunization ID (OIID) (if you or your child does not have an Ontario Health Card you can obtain their OIID and get assistance setting your PIN from Renfrew County and District Health Unit by calling 613-732-3629 ext: 509)
Why should you get vaccinated?
When you get vaccines, you protect yourself and everyone else around you. This includes our most vulnerable people, like very young children, the elderly or those who have weak immune systems. Regardless of how healthy you are, you could get very sick or even die without vaccines to protect you. The protection offered by some vaccines only last for a certain amount of time, so it is important to receive booster doses in adulthood to keep yourself and those around you safe.
As an adult you should receive the following free vaccines:
- tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis (once in adulthood)
- tetanus, diptheria (every 10 years)
- flu shot (every fall)
- Pneumococcal (free of charge for people aged 65 and over)
- shingles (free of charge for people 65 to 70 years of age)
More information on publicly funded vaccinations.
Immunization is a simple, effective way to protect your child against preventable diseases. Routine immunization begins at two months of age and continues throughout life according to Ontario’s routine immunization schedule
All of the routine vaccines are free of charge and are available at RCDHU’s immunization clinics, or from your family physician.
Bring your child’s immunization record (yellow card) when getting an immunization. Your health care provider will update the card. It is the parent’s responsibility to report immunizations to RCDHU. Call 613-732-3629 ext: 509
Keep the yellow card in a safe place. This record may be needed when:
- entering day care or school
- attending camp
- visiting an emergency department or clinic
Vaccine Fact Sheets
Providing Immunization information for attending licensed child care
Immunization protects children from many serious diseases that are easily spread in child care settings. In accordance with the Child Care and Early Years Act, all children attending a licensed child care centre must show proof of immunization against diphtheria, haemophilus influenza type B, measles, meningococcal diseases, mumps, pertussis, pneumococcal disease, poliomyelitis, rotavirus, rubella, tetanus, and varicella. Children who are not immunized must provide a valid exemption.
If you are registering your child for a licensed daycare, please complete the Immunization Program Questionnaire. Submit the questionnaire and a copy of your child’s immunization record to either your local Renfrew County and District Health Unit office or your licensed child care provider.
To be exempt from the required immunizations, one of the following must be provided to Renfrew County and District Health Unit:
- a statement of conscience or religious belief completed by a parent or guardian
- a statement of medical exemption completed by a medical doctor or nurse practitioner
If you have questions regarding the Immunization Program Questionnaire, or exemption form, please call us at 613-732-3629 ext 509 or 1-800-267-1097 extension 509.
As a parent, keeping your children safe and healthy is your number one priority. All children attending school between the ages of 4 to 17 need to be immunized according to Ontario’s immunization schedule. Immunization protects children from many serious diseases that are easily spread in schools.
Under the Immunization of School Pupils Act, children need to have proof of immunization against diphtheria, tetanus, polio, measles, mumps, rubella, meningococcal disease, and whooping cough. Also, children born in 2010 or later are required to show proof of immunization against chicken pox (Varicella). Children who are not fully immunized or do not have a valid exemption may not be allowed to attend school.
Process for approving immunization information for school registration
To ensure that all children have proof of the required vaccines, RCDHU reviews immunization records for each child who attends school on an annual basis. Do not assume that health units have all immunization information if your child has visited a doctor to receive their vaccines. Physicians offices are not obligated to automatically share completed immunizations with health units.
At registration for school, the parent or guardian ensures the student’s immunization record is up to date using the secure online ICON tool that is specific to the health unit region. This provides RCDHU with a paperless file of immunization records. It is important to check if you are using the ICON website for RCDHU, by looking at the top, since ICON tools are specific to health unit regions. Should you require assistance with using the tool or are having difficulty accessing the internet, please call the Health Unit Immunization line below.
Renfrew County and District Health Unit
1100 Pembroke St East, Unit 318
Pembroke, ON K8A 6Y7
Phone: 613-732-3629 ext. 509
Any students who do not meet the minimum requirements will receive a letter requesting the required immunization information. If your child receives an immunization notice, call RCDHU at 613-732-3629 ext. 509 or submit immunization information by using our new online tool.
The Health Unit offers community immunization clinics for students who are missing the required vaccines. To check what is available and to book an appointment call 613-732-3629 ext. 509.
Exemptions from immunization
1. If your child will be attending school and is medically unable to be vaccinated, a statement of medical exemption must be completed by a medical doctor or nurse practitioner.
2. As of September 1, 2017, if parents are choosing to not vaccinate their child, a mandatory education session must be completed. This is provided by Renfrew County and District Health Unit. For more information, please call 613-732-3629 ext. 509.
Please note that we need the original copy. A photocopy is not acceptable.
Call Renfrew County and District Health Unit at 613-732-3629 ext. 509 or 1-800-267-1097 ext. 509 for more information about exemptions from immunization.
Renfrew County and District Health Unit provides immunizations in schools, free of charge, for grade 7 students.
Grade 7 students are immunized against Hepatitis B (HB), Meningococcal Disease and Human Papillomavirus (HPV). Meningococcal vaccine is required for students to attend school in Ontario as per the Immunization of School Pupils Act (1990). HB and HPV vaccines are also strongly recommended.
If your child is not at school on the day that Public Health Nurses are there to give the vaccines, please call the Vaccine-Preventable Diseases intake line at 613-732-3629 ext: 509 or 1-800-267-1097 extension 509 to book an appointment at one of our immunization clinics.
Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health strongly advises that individuals and families:
- only travel out of the province if it is essential
- self-isolate for 14 days when arriving in or returning to Ontario
To slow the introduction and spread of COVID-19 in the country, the Government of Canada has put in place an emergency order under the Quarantine Act that applies to all travellers arriving in Canada.
Under this order, if you have recently returned to Canada you must self-isolate (quarantine) and stay home whether you have symptoms or not. Even if you do not have symptoms right away, you are at risk of developing them and infecting others.
- Guide for self-isolating after returning from abroad with COVID-19 symptoms
- Guide for self-isolating after returning from abroad without COVID-19 symptoms
When travelling outside of Canada, you may be at increased risk for illnesses and diseases that can be prevented by vaccines and/or other medications. Each destination is unique and may have required and/or recommended vaccines and medications.
You should consult a health care provider six to eight weeks before you travel. Call 613-732-3629 ext: 509 or 1-800-267-1097 extension 509 for more information.