HALIFAX -- More residents of New Brunswick are eligible to reschedule their second dose of COVID-19 vaccine to a sooner date.

Effective immediately, any New Brunswickers who received their first dose before May 15 can now book an appointment for their second dose through a participating pharmacy or at a Vitalité or Horizon health network clinic.

“Additional doses of vaccine are now arriving in the province,” said Dorothy Shephard, New Brunswick’s health minister. “Because of this, we are pleased to be able to expand eligibility so more New Brunswickers can book an appointment for their second dose.”

Health officials in New Brunswick say on Monday, June 21, eligibility for second dose appointments will be extended to everyone, as long as at least 28 days has passed since receiving their first dose.

“Right now, ensuring all New Brunswickers are fully vaccinated once they are eligible for their second dose is paramount,” said Dr. Jennifer Russell, chief medical officer of health. “COVID-19 will continue to be part of our lives, but as vaccinations continue to increase, we will see less severe cases of the virus, fewer hospitalizations and fewer deaths.”

In order to receive a second dose, New Brunswickers are asked to bring a signed consent form, their Medicare card and a copy of the record of immunization provided after receiving their first dose.

Public health is also asking residents to book an appointment at the same pharmacy or clinic that they received their first dose, if possible.

Appointments for people who have not yet received their first dose continue to be available to all New Brunswickers aged 12 and older at regional health authority clinics and through participating pharmacies.

If you received Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech, you can book an appointment for either vaccine for your second dose. They work the same way and have similar levels of safety and effectiveness.

If you received the AstraZeneca vaccine for your first dose and are under the age of 55, it is recommended that you receive an mRNA vaccine (Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech) as your second dose, unless contraindicated. If you are 55 or older, you can receive a second dose of AstraZeneca or of an mRNA vaccine.

THREE NEW CASES

New Brunswick is reporting three new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, all in the province's Fredericton region (Zone 3).

The cases involve two people in their 70s and an individual in their 80s.

Public health says all three cases are close contacts of previously reported infections.

Nine previously reported cases in New Brunswick are now considered resolved, with the total number of active cases dropping to 54.

REVISED CASE COUNT

The number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported in New Brunswick has been revised, according to public health.

Health officials say a previously identified case has been removed from the list because the lab confirmed it was a false positive.

"The case was originally reported in Zone 1 (Moncton region)," wrote the province in a news release.

N.B. COVID-19 CASE DATA

New Brunswick has had 2,311 cumulative cases of COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic.

In total, 2,211 people have recovered, and 45 people have died in the province from COVID-19.

Eight people are currently in hospital with COVID-19 in total, Of those, six patients are hospitalized in New Brunswick, including two in an intensive care unit.

Public health says 916 tests were completed on Thursday in New Brunswick, and 352,506 total since the start of the pandemic.

The number of cases are broken down by New Brunswick’s seven health zones:

  • Zone 1 – Moncton region: 474 confirmed cases (3 active cases)
  • Zone 2 – Saint John region: 295 confirmed cases (no active case)
  • Zone 3 – Fredericton region: 436 confirmed cases (30 active cases)
  • Zone 4 – Edmundston region: 752 confirmed cases (1 active case)
  • Zone 5 – Campbellton region: 185 confirmed cases (no active cases)
  • Zone 6 – Bathurst region: 130 confirmed cases (19 active cases)
  • Zone 7 – Miramichi region: 39 confirmed cases (1 active case)

VACCINE UPDATE

New Brunswick's COVID-19 online dashboard provides an update on the amount of vaccines that have been administered to date.

As of Friday, 636,010 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in New Brunswick.

Of those, approximately 75.9 per cent are first doses, while 15.9 per cent are second doses.

YELLOW LEVEL REMINDER

All of New Brunswick remains under the Yellow level of recovery under the province’s order.