KITCHENER -- COVID-19 vaccine clinics in Waterloo Region will offer walk-in spots for people looking for a second dose starting Thursday.

In a Wednesday news release, officials said walk-ins for first and second doses will be accepted at all clinics, as long as supply allows. People can still book appointments ahead of time if they prefer.

The region was designated a Delta variant hot spot by the province last month, which allowed for accelerated second doses.

Health officials are encouraging people to get their second doses as soon as they are eligible. Anyone who has a second dose appointment in September or October should rebook or walk-in to a local clinic.

Appointments made more than 40 days after a first dose will be cancelled, the region said, and officials will reach out with information about booking an earlier dose.

“With more vaccine available, and fewer people contending for appointments, we’re now able to accommodate walk-ins for both first and second doses,” Dept. Chief Shirley Hilton, who is leading the local vaccine effort, said in the news release. “We’re pleased to be able to make it easier for residents to complete their vaccine series as soon as possible.”

Anyone 12 and older who had Pfizer or Moderna as a first dose can get a second one 28 days later. Anyone who got AstraZeneca as a first dose can get a second dose of an mRNA vaccine after eight weeks.

Vaccines are also available at pharmacies and primary care facilities.

Officials are encouraging people to get their first and second dose as soon as possible to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and variants of concern in the community.