Starting April 20, Alberta Health Services (AHS) will be scheduling appointments for the AstraZeneca vaccinations for Albertans born in 1981 or earlier.
Walk-in vaccinations will be available at the walk-in clinics in Edmonton and Calgary, and specific pharmacies across the province.
“With COVID-19 cases at high levels throughout the province, we are lowering the age eligibility for this vaccine so that as many Albertans as possible are able to choose the protection this vaccine offers. The more people that get vaccinated as quickly as possible, the sooner we can protect our communities, reduce the burden on our healthcare system, and get life back to normal in our province,” said the Minister of Health, Tyler Shandro.
By lowering the eligibility age 575,425 more Albertans can be vaccinated, bringing the total eligible population to 2.3 million.
Alberta’s decision to reduce the age of eligibility for AstraZeneca from 55 to 40 is based on public health recommendations looking at the benefit the vaccine offers weighed against the risk of adverse events from the vaccine.
“I recommend any Albertan who is 40 or older consider getting the AstraZeneca vaccine as soon as possible. I know some Albertans have concerns about recent cases of blood clots. This is understandable, and it is also important to remember that these cases are extremely rare. This vaccine helps prevent the much higher risks that come from COVID-19 infection, helping to protect both you and those around you,” said the Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw.
As of April 17, more than 100,000 doses of AstraZeneca have been administered and there are more than 170,000 doses available.