REGINA -- Saskatchewan health officials are “looking very seriously” at using the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine as the second dose for residents who received AstraZeneca as their first dose.

According to Premier Scott Moe, the consideration is due to supply uncertainty from AstraZeneca.

“If there is AstraZeneca available which we do not have any indication there will be at this point in time, which [is] the reason why we're looking very seriously at Pfizer,” Moe said.

Moe said there should be a formal decision made by next week.

Saskatchewan Health Authority CEO Scott Livingstone mentioned that the AstraZeneca shot has successfully protected 65,000 Saskatchewan residents from COVID-19, including five of his family members.

“With respect to second doses, we're just not sure about allocations in the future. We do know that we can give AstraZeneca for a second dose and it’s still highly effective but also as you've heard from other jurisdictions using an mRNA vaccine to boost AstraZeneca is also acceptable,” Livingstone said.

He mentioned that though the province is unable to offer first dose clinics with AstraZeneca, it would if the supply was there to support it.

“But we are holding onto those doses now, almost exclusively using Pfizer and Moderna going forward until we such time get an assurance of AstraZeneca shipments,” Livingstone said.


On Tuesday morning, Alberta reported it would no longer provide AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine first shots to ensure the remaining supply was available for those needing a second dose.

However, based on global supply challenges we do not know when Canada, and in turn Alberta will receive additional doses. That is why effective today, We are holding our remaining AstraZeneca supply for either those who have a contraindication to an mRNA vaccine or for second doses, recognizing that some Albertans will need a second dose, beginning in early June,” Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, said Tuesday.

On Monday, Alberta opened vaccine bookings to everyone aged 12 years and older. More than 130,000 appointments were made by 4 p.m.

With files from