EDMONTON (660 NEWS) — Health officials don’t plan to extend the intervals between the first and second dose for COVID-19 vaccines past the initial 42-day mark, despite not knowing if they’ll have enough supply in the coming weeks.
The province has its allocation for next week but beyond that remains unclear.
“While I can’t say with certainty at this point, what I can say is that everything possible will be done to provide that second dose to all who had the first dose within that 42-day period,” Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, said Wednesday.
Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna Vaccines require two shots within a few weeks to be fully effective. The interval is 21 days for Pfizer while Moderna is 28 days.
I asked Hinsahw if the province will have to extend the time between the first and second dose past 42 days.
Hinshaw says it will depend on how many doses they receive in the coming weeks but they will try to meet that 42 day target
— Jeff Slack (@Jeffslack660) January 27, 2021
The National Advisory Council on Immunization (NACI) says the interval between first and second doses can be extended up to 42 days.
It was announced last week, that Pfizer would not be sending shipments of its vaccine to Canada this week because of ongoing work to increase production at its plant in Belgium.
The delay in vaccines forced Alberta to cancel first-dose appointments for eligible health-care workers and postpone plans to expand vaccination to all seniors over the age of 75 in the community and individuals over the age of 65 in First Nations communities and Metis Settlements around the province.
A total of 101,123 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been given to Albertans and 11,362 have been fully immunized with two doses.
Alberta Health Services have seen 32 adverse events following immunization.