In a statement, Alberta Health spokesman Tom McMillan said the current AstraZeneca offer in Alberta will be used as a second dose. “There are no known future mailings,” McMillan said in a statement to CBC News Tuesday.
McMillan said it is not known when Alberta will receive additional deliveries from AstraZeneca and the lack of supply has prompted provincial health officials to change the immunization strategy.
“Unlike AstraZeneca, Alberta receives Pfizer and Moderna vaccines in large and regular shipments. Over 236,000 doses are arriving this week alone.
“We will continue to monitor new research and keep Albertans informed in the weeks to come. “
More than 250 K doses administered
Alberta administered approximately 255,000 first doses of AstraZeneca and 2,200 second doses, Alberta Health said.
The remaining supply is around 8,400 doses, the statement said.
Albertans aged 40 and over have been eligible for the vaccine since last month. People aged 30 and over who live in Banff and the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo have also been offered the vaccine in a bid to reduce the high cases of COVID-19 in those areas.
The federal government confirmed last week that it will continue to buy AstraZeneca – and that well over a million doses are expected to arrive by the end of June.
The use of the AstraZeneca vaccine has come under intense scrutiny in recent weeks, especially after the Canadian Vaccine Expert Panel recommended that people who are not at high risk of COVID-19 wish to wait. to get a dose of Pfizer or Moderna.
AstraZeneca vaccine has been associated with vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia (VITT), an extremely rare blood clot disorder. To date, Alberta has reported two cases of VITT and one death.
The currently reported frequency of AstraZeneca vaccine blood clots ranges from one in 25,000 doses in Norway to one in a million in the UK, Alberta Health said.
Mix and match?
The recent controversy around the vaccine has led some provinces to consider halting AstraZeneca vaccinations altogether, leading health officials to explore a mixed approach for people who have already received their first injection of AstraZeneca.
It is not known whether those who have received AstraZeneca may be offered a different vaccine for their second dose.
Some health experts suggest that alternating COVID-19 vaccines may provide a stronger immune response and better protection against various strains of the virus.