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The Manitoba government is expanding access for a COVID-19 bivalent booster to people 18 and older.

Those who are eligible can start booking appointments Thursday.

The bivalent vaccine, which targets the original strain of COVID-19 and the Omicron variant, was approved earlier this month by Health Canada.

Previously, Manitoba residents 65 and older, those with certain medical conditions, health-care workers, people in care homes and Indigenous adults were eligible for the shot.

The province recommends people wait six months from their last dose of any COVID-19 vaccine to get their bivalent booster in order to get the best immune response.

The minimum interval between a last dose and booster is three months.

The province says, as of Monday, 3,216 doses of the bivalent vaccine had been administered in Manitoba, and immunizations at personal care home and other facilities are underway.

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