OTTAWA -- The Renfrew County and District Health Unit (RCDHU) is expanding COVID-19 vaccine eligibility in its region to all adults effective Tuesday morning, in line with the provincial system.

The RCDHU does not use the Ontario COVID-19 vaccine booking portal and instead allows residents to book appointments directly with the local health unit.

In a release Monday afternoon, the RCDHU said eligibility for COVID-19 vaccines in Renfrew County would open up to anyone 18 and older at 8 a.m. Tuesday.

"Individuals who are 17 years old and are turning 18 in 2021 will also be eligible to book their COVID-19 vaccination appointment for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine only. The Pfizer vaccine is currently the only COVID-19 vaccine that has been authorized by Health Canada for use in youth aged 12 and over," the RCDHU said.

Ontario is expanding eligibility for COVID-19 vaccines to anyone born in or before 2003 as of 8 a.m. Tuesday. The timeline for the 18 to 29 demographic was moved up a week because of additional supply of vaccines being sent to the province.

The RCDHU asks residents to book vaccination appointments through its website. Individuals are encouraged to ask a family member or friend to assist if they are unable to book online themselves.

"Only if a person is unable to register online, they can call RCDHU at 613-735-9724 or 1-800-267- 1097, Ext. 200. Residents are asked to leave one message with their name and phone number, and someone will return their call as soon as possible," the RCDHU says.

The health unit added that Indigenous residents and their household members are now eligible to book an early second dose through the regular booking system.

"Special accommodations will not be made for this group – so 'earlier' second dose appointments will be based on appointment/dose availability," the release said.

The RCDHU says 42,467 doses of COVID-19 vaccines had been administered in Renfrew County as of May 9.