By the end of the workday on January 5, health officials say Alberta will have administered close to 29,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses.
“It was an aggressive goal and we’re getting there only a few days later than we had hoped,” Health Minister Tyler Shandro said at a media briefing Tuesday afternoon.
The province is still in Phase 1A, where it’s focusing on high priority groups including home care workers and emergency department health staff.
Phase 1B will commence in February, when vaccine will be offered to seniors over 75, healthcare workers in surgical operating rooms, and Indigenous communities.
The province is also rolling out a new digital platform for healthcare workers to book their COVID-19 vaccination appointments from their phone or a computer, Shandro said. Right now it’s by invitation only.
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Dr. Deena Hinshaw said Alberta Health Services overbooks its appointments every day to ensure there are always patients present to receive available vaccine doses. In the rare case that there are no more patients in line to take thawed vaccine, staff on-site will administer it to each other.
The province’s top doctor quashed rumours that vaccine doses are being wasted.
“Small amounts may be lost if a vial is dropped or spilled,” she said. “Some human errors are unavoidable. But these are limited … The proportion lost is lower than what we see in average influenza season.”