COVID-19 Vaccination information

This page answers questions about the administration of COVID-19 vaccines in Ontario.

The Ministry of Health is working with vaccination sites to deliver the COVID-19 vaccine to the public. Individuals wanting to help with the vaccination efforts can register and apply through the Ontario Matching Portal.

During the vaccine rollout, it is important to continue to follow public health measures to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

  • The Ministry of Health has created an exemption in the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991 to allow Registered Nurses, Registered Practical Nurses and specified pharmacists to administer the COVID-19 vaccine without an order.  
  • A Dec. 2021 exemption to the Controlled Acts regulations under the RHPA allows any person to administer a COVID-19 vaccine, if a physician, Registered Nurse, Nurse Practitioner, or pharmacist is present and accessible to the person administering the vaccine.
  • Nurses are responsible to ensure they have the appropriate knowledge, skill, and judgment to safely administer vaccines and to refrain from performing the procedure if they are not competent to do so.
  • Public health measures work best when used in combination (e.g. vaccination, masking, physical distancing, hand washing)
  • Health Canada sets high standards for drug review, approvals and monitoring processes.
  • Nurses are accountable to role model and follow public health directives that keep patients safe, including knowing the evidence to dispel myths and misinformation so that you can have a conversation with patients in a helpful way. 


  • When talking to patients about any treatment, nurses ensure they include patients as partners in their care decisions and set aside adequate time to listen to patients and address concerns and/or correct misconceptions.
  • Vaccines are one of the ways we fight COVID-19. Like any other drug/vaccine/treatment, there are benefits and risks. Nurses should discuss the benefits and risks of vaccines versus the risks of diseases.
  • Nurses can employ the following strategies when having difficult discussions with patients:
    • continually seek to understand the patient’s health care needs and perspectives
    • ask open-ended questions
    • acknowledge the patient’s concerns about the health care system and his/her experiences as a patient;
    • For more information, please see the Conflict Prevention and Management guideline



CNO strongly recommends nurses to get vaccinated. Vaccines produce protection against diseases as a result of the body developing an immune response. This immunity helps people fight the virus if exposed. Vaccinations are an evidence-based public health intervention and we encourage all individuals to get vaccinated.

We also encourage nurses to refer to their employer policies about vaccination requirements.

By getting the COVID-19 vaccine, you are not only protecting yourself, but you are also protecting those you care for, and the health care system’s capacity to deliver needed services during the pandemic.

Vaccination Resources

Page last reviewed April 07, 2022