Shipment delay causes change in COVID-19 vaccine appointments, residents still encouraged to get the shot
REGINA -- A delay in Pfizer shipments is causing the Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) to change up some of its booked vaccine appointments.
The delay lead the SHA to change about 4,000 booked Pfizer appointments to Moderna.
“We do have Pfizer arriving today and yesterday, so we are continuing on with booked appointments for Pfizer doses, as well as other avenues such as drive throughs and walk-ins, and in community pharmacies of course,” said Derek Miller, the emergency response chief for the SHA.
Miller said the SHA expects the normal shipment of vaccines at the end of the month, and will have a slight reduction of Pfizer at the start of July. But residents are encouraged to get whatever shot they can.
“It doesn't really matter if your first dose was AstraZeneca, Pfizer or Moderna, as soon as you're eligible, then get the vaccine that's available close to you,” said Dr. Saqib Shahab, the province’s chief medical health officer.
Saskatchewan reported a record on Thursday, with more than two per cent of the provincial population receiving a vaccine in one day. Health Minister Paul Merriman said nearly 25,000 people rolled up their sleeves for a shot, the most the province has seen given out since the start of the vaccination campaign.
“If you're not vaccinated, there is still a very good chance you will get COVID at some point, and you may become seriously ill,” said Merriman.
Merriman said about 2,500 of the shots given on Thursday were first doses. However, the SHA is hoping to encourage more people to get their first dose. Currently only 55 per cent of residents between 12 and 17 years old have their first dose, 53 per cent for 18 to 29 year olds and 59 per cent for residents 30 to 39.
“This is the time we’ve had the most vaccines available…we're going to continue to look at spots in the province that have not got fully vaccinated or have low uptake,” said Merriman.
Merriman said when the province hits its target for reopening, it’s not the end of the vaccination program, as the SHA will keep offering vaccines for anyone who needs it.