A vial of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is shown at a facility in Milton, Ont., on Wednesday, March 3, 2021. Alberta Health Services is running out of doses of a COVID-19 vaccine that it had been making available to younger people. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Carlos Osorio

A vial of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is shown at a facility in Milton, Ont., on Wednesday, March 3, 2021. Alberta Health Services is running out of doses of a COVID-19 vaccine that it had been making available to younger people. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Carlos Osorio

Bookings to close soon for AstraZeneca vaccine in Alberta as supplies dwindle

The province’s health delivery agency issued a statement Saturday that it was nearing a maximum number

Alberta Health Services is running out of doses of a COVID-19 vaccine that it had been making available to younger people.

The province’s health delivery agency issued a statement Saturday that it was nearing the maximum number of bookings it could schedule for the current supply of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine.

It encourages people to book appointments online or by phone until 4 p.m. on Sunday, and after that any remaining bookings will only be made by phone.

Albertans who were born between 1957 and 1961, and First Nations, Métis and Inuit people born between 1972 and 1976, are eligible for the AstraZeneca shots.

The AstraZeneca vaccine is not being offered to Albertans over 65 as its efficacy in that age group remains in question.

AHS says when new AstraZeneca doses arrive sometime this spring, appointments will be open for the same birth years to ensure anyone who wants it can get it, but people who want different vaccines might have to wait until May.

No new age groups for AstraZeneca are being added at this time due to the limited number of doses remaining, the AHS statement says.

So far, Canada has approved vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, Oxford-AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson.

Alberta received an initial allotment of 58,500 doses of AstraZeneca.

AHS says Calgary and Edmonton have limited appointments remaining, but that appointments are available in regional and rural areas.

It warns that people who choose to receive AstraZeneca may need to travel to receive it.

Alberta reported Saturday that five additional people with COVID-19 had died in the previous 24 hours and that there were 474 new cases.

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