Amid Pfizer shortage, Alberta urges take first available shot – .

Amid Pfizer shortage, Alberta urges take first available shot – .

Provincial data shows Moderna is 93% effective against COVID-19 infection after two doses, and Pfizer is 90% effective

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Health officials want Albertans to reserve the first vaccine available to them due to a shortage of appointments at Pfizer.

As of Thursday afternoon, no Pfizer appointment for the second injection was available through Alberta Health Services in Calgary, the nearest clinic offering the injection in Picture Butte, about 200 kilometers southeast of the city.

Calgary appointments for Moderna, on the other hand, could be booked through AHS as early as next week.

Alberta Health spokesperson Tom McMillan said Albertans who have received an mRNA vaccine – Pfizer or Moderna – can receive either vaccine for their second dose. But it will be faster for them to get Moderna as a second dose, regardless of the vaccine they received for their first injection.

“With (fewer) doses of Pfizer and more doses of Moderna over the next few weeks, some people may have to wait a little longer for a Pfizer appointment than for a Moderna,” McMillan said.


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Earlier this week, Alberta Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr Deena Hinshaw said on Twitter that Pfizer and Moderna vaccines can be taken interchangeably, adding that it is “perfectly acceptable to get a dose of each one “. Provincial data shows Moderna is 93% effective against COVID-19 infection after two doses, and Pfizer is 90% effective.

But McMillan said some still choose to wait for Pfizer appointments. There are 270,000 Pfizer appointments booked in Alberta for the next seven days, compared to 123,000 for Moderna.

Many more Albertans received Pfizer as their first dose, as the province has received approximately three times as many doses of Pfizer as Moderna to date.

The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is seen at the Walden Shoppers Drug Mart in Calgary on Monday, April 5, 2021. Photo de Gavin Young/Postmedia

Alberta received nearly a million doses of Moderna between June 14 and June 23, however, the largest vaccine inflow to date. Hundreds of thousands of additional doses of each vaccine are expected in the coming weeks.


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“We are getting enough vaccines in the coming weeks so that all Albertans can reserve their first or second dose as soon as possible,” said McMillan.

The only Albertans who cannot receive the dose of Moderna are those aged 12 to 17; only Pfizer is approved for this age group.

Alberta on Thursday recorded its third largest day for second doses to date, reporting 54,308 additional second injections made across the province the day before.

One in three Albertans aged 12 and over has now received the necessary two doses of the vaccine. This is the highest rate among the Canadian provinces.

The first doses of vaccination are also continuing in Alberta, but at a slower pace. Over the past week, the province has administered approximately 6,730 initial doses on average each day. Of eligible Albertans, 71.1% now have at least one injection.


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In an effort to increase absorption of the first dose, Alberta is running a series of walk-in clinics for first injections this weekend in northeast Calgary.

Clinics will be open at Akram Jomaa Mosque on Friday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and at Baitun Nur Mosque on Friday from 2:30 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Officials will ask Calgarians to roll up their sleeves at the Somali Canadian Society of Calgary on Saturday from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m., and at the Dashmesh Culture Center on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Alberta hit the 70% first dose threshold last week, triggering the lifting of almost all public health restrictions on Canada Day.

But the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench is not as optimistic as Premier Jason Kenney about reopening the province.


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The Calgary Courts Center was pictured on Monday May 3, 2021. Photo de Gavin Young/Postmedia

In an announcement posted on the Alberta Courts website, the court said it would take a “cautious approach to resuming operations.”

The court will continue to try to minimize traffic in courthouses as much as possible, and although trials involving oral testimony will take place in July and August, “all other matters will continue to be conducted at a distance.

“The state of the COVID-19 pandemic and the openness of the province of Alberta will be monitored very closely over the summer months. “

Elsewhere on Thursday, Alberta reported 73 new cases of COVID-19 out of about 5,700 tests, which represents a positivity rate of 1.3%.

There are 1,580 active cases of COVID-19 in Alberta. That’s the least since September 24, before the start of the province’s second wave.

Fewer Albertans are suffering from serious illness from the novel coronavirus. There are now 190 Albertans hospitalized with COVID-19, 50 of whom are in intensive care units, up from 199 and 56 the day before, respectively.

Another death from the virus has been reported. Alberta’s pandemic toll now stands at 2,293.

– With files from Kevin Martin

[email protected]

Twitter: @jasonfherring


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