Albertans born in 1957 and First Nations, Métis, and Inuit individuals born in 1972 are able to begin scheduling their AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine appointments through Alberta Health Services (AHS) on Wednesday.
In addition to the AstraZeneca vaccine, Albertans in this age group may be offered the Covishield vaccine.
Covishield is produced by the Serum Institute of India, and is considered equivalent to AstraZeneca. The Covishield vaccine was recently approved by Health Canada.
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At this time, AHS recommends the AstraZeneca/Covishield vaccine for Albertans aged 18 to 64 who don’t have a contraindication (such as a severe reaction to a vaccine ingredient) or any severe chronic health conditions.
If you are thinking of getting the Covishield/AstraZeneca vaccine, we encourage you to speak with your healthcare provider. Together, you can determine if the Covishield/AstraZeneca vaccine is right for you based on your health and circumstances.
— Alberta Health Services (@AHS_media) March 10, 2021
Qualifying individuals can book appointments online or by calling HealthLink at 811. First Nations, Métis, and Inuit are only able to book an immunization appointment by calling 811.
Appointment availability will be determined by vaccine supply.
With vaccine rollout expanding, the AHS online booking tool has been upgraded to make sure eligible Albertans can book their appointments efficiently.
Those calling 811 now have a choice to either route their call to book a COVID-19 immunization appointment or to reach a registered nurse for medical concerns.
A holding queue for callers requesting the immunization appointment option has also been implemented. This allows up to 350 individuals to wait for a Health Link team member to book their vaccine appointment.
AstraZeneca and Covishield will be offered in communities across Alberta; however, some individuals may need to travel outside their home community to receive this vaccine.
The initial doses of the AstraZeneca/Covishield vaccine will not be available at pharmacies.
AHS reported in a tweet on Wednesday morning that over 5,000 Albertans have already booked appointments to receive the AstraZeneca/Covishield vaccine.
Alberta Health Services announced that, pending vaccine supply, Albertans born in 1958 to 1971 will be offered a chance to schedule their vaccination appointments in the coming days, with bookings rolling out one birth year at a time.