Canada

Some pharmacies in Alberta now administering COVID-19 vaccines

EDMONTON —
They’ve been administering the flu shot for years, and now pharmacists at 100 pharmacies in Edmonton, Red Deer and Calgary are doling out COVID-19 vaccines.

Kevin Wong of Access Pharmacy is one of those pharmacists.

“I assume it’s going to be one of the most important things do as a pharmacist in my career. I mean when does a pandemic happen worldwide so I’m really honoured, really excited,” he said.

His pharmacy one of 100 selected to give the COVID-19 vaccination.

His first patient, Louis Fung admits he was hesitant to get it at first.

“After all the information, and also I think it’s everybody’s duty to have a shot.”

For family members of elderly Albertans, the vaccination offers a sense of relief.

“She was pretty excited to come today. She was waiting for the shot. She was pretty excited because she wants to go out and everything,” said Ken Zhang, who brought a family member down.

About 200 doses are available to participating pharmacies each week.

“This vaccine has been so different from any of the vaccines we’ve handled in the past so there’s just been a lot of work kind of backstage to make sure the storage, the handling, the training,” said Shoppers Drug Mart pharmacist Shivali Sharma.

Sharma’s pharmacy has already booked as many eligible as it can for the first week, and there is already interest from seniors in the next phase of the vaccine rollout.

“We weren’t anticipating to start that until April, but as of yesterday we were told that beginning the week of March 15 we can start booking appointments.”

With files from CTV News Edmonton’s Amanda Anderson.


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