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People wearing masks walk past a Shoppers Drug Mart advertising COVID-19 vaccines in Toronto on March 16, 2021.

CHRIS HELGREN/Reuters

A new report says distributing COVID-19 vaccines to buildings with large populations of seniors would be an equitable approach to protecting the most vulnerable.

The report published today by scientists advising the Ontario government on the pandemic looks at “naturally occurring retirement communities” in Toronto.

Researchers identify 489 such buildings in Toronto, including 256 in neighbourhoods that have the highest incidence of COVID-19.

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They argue targeting buildings in high-risk neighbourhoods where at least 30 per cent of residents are 65 and older would be an efficient and equitable approach to vaccinations.

The report says this would offer an age-friendly option for older adults who are homebound or face challenges booking appointments, travelling to large clinics and waiting in lines.

The research group had previously made the case for prioritizing COVID-19 vaccination by age and neighbourhood to get shots to those most at-risk of hospitalization and death.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford says people across the province can’t let their guard down as the province’s science advisers warn of a third wave of COVID-19. Ford said that people must continue to follow public-health guidance even as vaccines become more widely available. The Canadian Press

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