Alberta expands COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to include paramedics, EMRs: Kenney

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The province has the capacity to be administering 3,800 doses per day, Kenney explained, adding that more than three-quarters of Alberta’s stock is now in people’s arms.

There have been seven adverse events following immunizations which were mostly minor, such as swollen lymph nodes, upset stomachs or rashes. Three of the events involved an allergic reaction, though none were anaphylactic, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw explained.

“The current overall adverse event rate per 100,000 doses for COVID-19 vaccine is roughly comparable to the rate for pneumococcal vaccines,” said Hinshaw. Only eight adverse events have been recorded this year from just under 31,000 doses of the pneumococcal vaccine.

“Allergic reactions can happen with any medication, vaccine or even food. Being ready to respond to an allergic reaction is a critical part of every immunization program,” Hinshaw said, adding that this is the reason people are asked to stick around for a short time after any inoculation.

Long-term care and supportive living residents across the province are expected to have all received their first dose by next week, Kenney said.

Second shots are scheduled to start next week for those who have waited enough time between doses.

Official Opposition Leader Rachel Notley called for further transparency from Kenney and the vaccine task force, including daily briefings from members of the task force, so people can access information on the progress of immunizations among at-risk groups, vaccine distribution at sites with outbreaks and updates on storage and transportation.

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