Kenney to give update about vaccine rollout and reopening Alberta

Jun 18 2021, 9:22 am

The Government of Alberta is expected to make an announcement about the COVID-19 vaccine rollout and the province’s plan for reopening on Friday afternoon.

On May 26, Alberta announced its three-stage plan to ease public health restrictions and reopen amenities and activities across the province. The Open for Summer Plan uses a combination of hospitalization and vaccination benchmarks to enter each stage.

Alberta moved into Stage 1 of the Open for Summer Plan on June 1, two weeks after 50% of eligible Albertans had received at least one dose of vaccine and with COVID-19 hospitalizations below 800 and declining. This allowed for reopening restaurant patio dining, personal and wellness services, outdoor recreation activities, increased size for outdoor social gatherings, and more.

Stage 2 began on June 10, two weeks after 60% of eligible Albertans had received at least one dose of vaccine and with COVID-19 hospitalizations below 500 and declining. Under Stage 2, restaurants can offer indoor dining, gyms, libraries, and movie theatres can reopen, outdoor gathering sizes further increased, and more.

The province can enter Stage 3 two weeks after 70% of Albertans have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Stage 3 means the lifting of all public health restrictions, including the ban on indoor social gatherings.

As of June 16, 69.9% of the eligible population has received at least one dose of the vaccine. A total of 3,583,406 doses of vaccine have been administered in the province, and 24.2% of Albertans are fully immunized with two doses.

Currently, anyone who received their first dose of the vaccine in April or earlier can sign up to receive a second dose.

Alberta introduced the Open for Summer Lottery earlier this week in an effort to encourage more eligible Albertans to receive their COVID-19 vaccine. The lottery has three $1 million prizes up for grabs, along with 40 travel-related packages.

The first $1 million prize will be drawn when the province moves into Stage 3 of the reopening plan.

On Thursday, Alberta reported 150 new COVID-19 cases, marking the eighth day in row that the province had found under 200 new infections. There are 242 people in hospital due to the virus.

Premier Jason Kenney and Tyler Shandro, Minister of Health, are scheduled to begin their remarks at 1 pm.

Elle McLeanElle McLean

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