Alberta is set to provide an update today on its COVID-19 vaccine plan.
It comes as the first shipments of the highly anticipated Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine arrived in Canada on Sunday night.
Health Minister Tyler Shandro will be joined by Alberta’s chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw at a press conference scheduled for 12 p.m. MT.
The chair of the province’s COVID-19 vaccine task force Paul Wynnyk is also set to attend.
Shandro has said he expected the province to receive 3,900 doses of the vaccine this week, with the first doses administered to intensive care doctors and nurses, respiratory therapists and long-term care workers.
Because the initial doses of the vaccine can be administered only at the sites it’s delivered to — due to the fact it needs to be stored at ultra-cold temperatures — the province is not yet able to begin vaccinating patients at those facilities.
Instead, shots will be given at the two initial shipment locations in Edmonton and Calgary.
The first acute-care staff to get the vaccines will be at the Foothills Hospital and the Peter Lougheed Centre in Calgary, and from University of Alberta and Royal Alexandra hospitals in Edmonton. Alberta Health Services will book appointments for those staff to receive their second dose when they receive their first.
Dr. Darren Markland, an intensive care physician at the Royal Alexandra Hospital, says he expects to receive his first dose on Wednesday.