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This update is from our hard working MLA Jason Luan from Calgary – Foothills, on the COVID-19 vaccine update. #yyc #yyccc #ableg #covid19ab

Alberta’s government will begin offering COVID-19 vaccines to all seniors aged 75 years and over province-wide. 
  • We are focusing on protecting those at high risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19, and health care workers essential to maintaining the pandemic response.
    • By targeting the most at-risk groups for immunization first, we will protect vulnerable Albertans, protect our critical workforce, and prevent outbreaks. 
  • Alberta has the most dynamic vaccine distribution system in the country. As the vaccine supply starts to increase, we are expanding our approach. 
  • Starting Feb. 19, Alberta Health Services will offer the vaccine directly to all residents in retirement centres, lodges, supportive living and other congregate living facilities with residents who are 75 or older. 
  • Starting Feb. 24, any Albertan living in the community who was born in 1946 or earlier will be eligible to book an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine.
    • Appointment availability will be based on vaccine supply.
    • Additional information on how to book an appointment will be released on Feb. 24. 
  • The ability to move forward in Alberta’s vaccination plan depends solely on there being an adequate supply of vaccines.
  • When will immunizations to all seniors start? Finish?
    • AHS will be offering the vaccine to seniors’ congregate facilities starting Feb. 19 and all eligible seniors will be able to start booking appointments on Feb. 24. Appointment availability will depend on vaccine supply.
    • Exact timing for completing Phase 1 will also depend on vaccine supply.
  • How many seniors 75+ are expected to receive the vaccine?
    • Approximately 230,000 Albertans age 75 and older will be offered the vaccine.
  • When will all other seniors be able to receive the vaccine?
    • We will expand immunization services to other older Albertans as soon as possible. We have outlined the next priority groups in Phase 2.
    • An exact date for moving to Phase 2 will depend on the vaccine supply.
  • How seniors book an appointment?
    • Seniors will be able to book their immunization appointment both online and over the telephone.
    • Links and phone number will be posted Feb. 24.
  • How will seniors know they’re now eligible? Are you contacting them?
    • AHS will be directly contacting eligible congregate living facilities to arrange for immunizations.
    • We will be doing significant outreach through advertising, social media and online.
  • Are you using birth date or year of birth?
    • Anyone born in 1946 or earlier is eligible to get the vaccine.
    • Seniors will require ID as proof of age eligibility before the vaccine is administered.
  • Can family members book the appointment for their parent/loved one?
    • Yes, the Alberta Health Services online booking system and contact number will only require age to be entered.
    • Seniors will require ID as proof of age eligibility before the vaccine is administered.
  • Can seniors get the vaccine at their doctor’s office? 
    • Not at this time, but we are working with the AMA to offer immunizations through community physicians in the future.
  • Can community seniors with health issues arrange for a home visit? 
    • Not at this time, but we are working with Alberta Health Services and Seniors and Housing to have local organizations support seniors accessing immunization at local AHS clinics.
  • How do I know when my parent’s home gets the vaccine?
    • Alberta Health Services will directly contact seniors congregate care facilities to arrange appointments for immunization services.
    • In sites where, eligible seniors interact with residents younger than 75, health officials will offer the vaccine to everyone living in the facility.
    • Offering COVID-19 vaccine simultaneously to all residents reduces the overall risk of disease transmission, severe illness and death in the most vulnerable.
  • Why are you immunizing seniors under 75 in congregate living facilities?
    • We are doing this to protect the health of everyone living and working in these facilities.
    • Beyond the risk factor of age, the highest risk of severe outcomes was in those who were residents of long-term care and designated supportive living.
    • Local population immunity can be achieved if the vaccine is offered to all residents at the same time. When only portions of the residents are immunized, the chain of transmission will not be broken and outbreaks can occur, putting both immunized and unimmunized residents at risk.
    • Health system capacity is a necessary consideration in supporting a whole facility approach. Offering vaccine to all residents when doing outreach requires fewer staffing resources (AHS and facility staff), allowing us to safely and efficiently immunize more Albertans.
  • What kinds of vaccines will be used?
    • We will use the vaccines that have been approved for use in Canada, which right now are Pfizer and Moderna.
Sean Chu

Sean Chu

Sean Chu arrived in Calgary from Taiwan in 1985 speaking not a word of English, and within 7 years he was a sworn officer with the Calgary Police Service. From that point on Sean worked with the Calgary Police Service as on Officer for 21 years in a number of roles until 2013.

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