Alberta’s government will bring in four new measures starting immediately to ramp-up the COVID-19 vaccine rollout as infections and hospitalizations rise.
The new measures will mean about 500,000 more Albertans will be eligible to be vaccinated starting April 7.
Opening bookings to everyone in Phase 2B
Starting April 7 at 8 a.m., anyone born in 2005 or earlier with eligible underlying health conditions can book appointments for the COVID-19 vaccine at participating pharmacies or with Alberta Health Services (AHS) online or by calling 811.
Those currently eligible under Phase 2B are Albertans with underlying health conditions born in or before 1973. This amounts to about 150,000 Albertans. By expanding to those born in 2005 or before, 500,000 more Albertans will be eligible.
Information on eligible health conditions, including examples, is available at alberta.ca/vaccine.
AstraZeneca vaccine available for Albertans 55+
Albertans aged 55 to 64 who do not have a chronic health condition can now make an appointment to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine.
Effective immediately, anyone born between 1957 and 1966 can book appointments at participating pharmacies across the province. AHS will also begin booking appointments starting on Monday, April 12.
The AstraZeneca vaccine is safe and effective at reducing severe illness from COVID-19. The rare blood clots reported in Europe have not been reported in Canada, and risk of COVID-19 infection is far greater than any vaccine risk.
Based on current evidence, Albertans who are 55 and older who are diagnosed with COVID-19 are at least 10 times more likely to be admitted to the intensive care unit from COVID-19, and at least 45 times more likely to need hospital treatment for COVID-19, than they are to experience any form of the rare, treatable blood clots reported in Europe.
Eligible Albertans in this phase can choose to wait to receive a Pfizer or Moderna vaccine to be available to them when Phase 2D opens in May.
Rapid flow clinics
Bookings for rapid flow clinics in Grand Prairie, Fort McMurray, Red Deer, Lethbridge and Medicine Hat will open on Friday, April 9. More clinics will open in Edmonton and Calgary next week.
Bookings can be made with Alberta Health Services (AHS) online or by calling 811.
Alberta will soon expand its vaccine rollout at participating pharmacies to allow walk-in bookings, rather than those by appointment only. Additional information will be shared when pharmacy walk-ins become available next week.