Alberta expands vaccine rollout to include nearly half a million more people

Apr 7 2021, 1:09 pm

In a Tuesday afternoon COVID-19 update, the provincial government announced that, beginning Wednesday, April 7, Alberta’s vaccine rollout is being expanded to include anyone eligible under Phase 2B.

Phase 2B includes Albertans born 2005 to 1957 with high-risk underlying health conditions. The rollout of Phase 2B began on March 30, with eligibility based on birth year, and expanded as more vaccines became available.

Now, anyone who qualifies under this phase can schedule an appointment to receive their vaccination, regardless of birth year.

Prior to Wednesday’s addition to the vaccine rollout, about 150,000 individuals born in 1973 or earlier were eligible under Phase 2B. This expansion includes approximately 500,000 more Albertans with underlying health conditions.

Albertans who qualify for the vaccine under Phase 2B can now schedule their appointments through the Alberta Health Services (AHS) online booking system or by calling 811.

Immunizations can also be booked at participating pharmacies.

A list of eligible health conditions can be found on the Alberta government’s website. Albertans do not need to provide proof of their health condition to receive the vaccine.

In addition to completing the rollout of Phase 2B, the province is introducing three other new measures to ramp-up COVID-19 immunizations as infections and hospitalizations rise.

These new measures include making the AstraZeneca vaccine available to anyone aged 55 and older, opening up rapid flow clinics across the province, and adding the option of pharmacy walk-ins.

Effective immediately, Albertans aged 55 to 64 who do not have a chronic health condition can make an appointment to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine at participating pharmacies. AHS will also begin taking appointments for these individuals starting on Monday, April 12.

Bookings for rapid flow clinics in Grand Prairie, Fort McMurray, Red Deer, Lethbridge, and Medicine Hat will open on Friday, April 9, and more clinics will open in Edmonton and Calgary next week. Appointments at these clinics can be made by calling 811 or through AHS’s online booking tool.

Pharmacy walk-ins for COVID-19 vaccinations will become available starting next week. Further information will be released as this new program begins to roll out.

As of April 5, 734,403 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in the province, with 123,272 Albertans having received the two doses required to be considered fully immunized.

Elle McLeanElle McLean

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