Vaccine Prioritization for people with developmental disabilities.

This petition made change with 1,688 supporters!

At this moment people with developmental disabilities are not explicitly stated as being included in the 'At risk' category in Phase II of Ontario's vaccine rollout. We believe that individuals with disabilities should be prioritized in Ontarios COVID-19 vaccination plan. lt is of value to note that individuals with disabilities tend to show signs and symptoms of frailty at a younger age than the general population making them at greater risk of acquiring the virus. ln fact not to the scale that has been seen in long term care facilities, there have already been publicized outbreaks in congregate living facilities supporting adults with physical and developmental disabilities. Similar to the long term care setting many individuals with disabilities rely on outside caregivers for support, thus increasing risk of COVID-19 transmissions (Campanella, Rotenberg, Volpe, Balogh & Lunksy, 2021).

Recent research suggests that individuals with disabilities have a higher hospitalization and death rate related to COVlD-19 than the general population (Campanella, et al., 2021). For example, Annals of lnternal Medicine American College of physicians (October 2020) reported that people with Down Syndrome were four times more likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19 and ten times more likely to die from COVID-19 than the average individual.  
We are urging the Ontario government to please consider moving this population higher on the vaccination priority list.

We have seen first hand the affect this pandemic has had on mental health in this population. This population thrives on structure and social interaction, and the pandemic has caused them, along with many other people, to suffer from depression. One of the key differences in this group, however is their lack of ability to understand why they are not allowed to see their social groups, and the difficulty in navigating virtual visits. lf the vaccination program could prioritize individuals with disabilities it is our hope that we could start working to help
these individuals improve their social, job and life skills while easing the burden on their families. 

Please sign this petition to let our members of the Ontario Ministry of Health and the Canadian Parliament understand the urgency of this situation and show your support for this vulnerable group who has been forgotten!

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