There are now 259 pharmacies in Alberta offering COVID-19 vaccines, greatly increasing the province’s ability to quickly and safely immunize people.
In a Thursday afternoon news release, the Alberta government announced that participating pharmacies are located in 107 communities throughout the province – a 154% increase since vaccine rollout first came to pharmacies on March 1.
As of March 17, 418,663 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in Alberta. Of those, over 35,000 vaccines were provided at pharmacies.
- See also:
Ultimately, community pharmacies will become the largest provider of the vaccine to those living in the province.
“Alberta’s early decision to meaningfully involve pharmacists in vaccinating residents has made a significant impact in the fight against COVID-19, allowing them to open up vaccines to more Albertans, more quickly,” says Shoppers Drug Mart President Jeff Leger.
“[We] hope that someday soon all pharmacies will be administering the vaccine to residents.”
Each participating pharmacy must adhere to strict protocols to protect those receiving their immunization, staff, and other patrons.
Pharmacists must also have previously demonstrated experience with immunizations and the specialized skills needed to safely provide vaccines.
The number of participating pharmacies will increase further as more vaccine doses arrive, and the provincial government expects that up to 500 locations could be booking appointments by early April.
However, appointments are dependent on the number of doses that the province receives.
The Alberta government explained that it remains reliant on the federal government and the timing of shipments coming into the province for all bookings.
Recent delays in Moderna shipments may impact some pharmacy appointments scheduled for the week of March 22.
“We’re expanding the vaccine rollout as fast as the supply coming into Alberta allows. Our speed and efficiency is only held back by the number of doses that we receive from the federal government,” says Alberta Premier Jason Kenney.
“Thousands of Albertans are getting immunized at pharmacies every day, and that number will rise sharply in the weeks ahead.”
Additionally, Albertans can continue to book their vaccination appointments with Alberta Health Services online or by calling 811.