Alberta 'trying' to deliver second COVID-19 vaccine dose within 42 days
A health care workers prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. (The Canadian Press)
EDMONTON -- With news vaccine delivery delays may be worse than expected in the short term, Alberta’s top doctor says the province will be “using our current allocations as wisely as possible.”
During her update on the pandemic response Thursday, Alberta's Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said the province is “wanting to do our utmost” to ensure everyone who has received one dose of the vaccine gets their second dose within 42 days.
“If not, they will continue to be eligible and will receive it as soon as possible after that,” said Hinshaw.
The two vaccines that have been approved in Canada so far – Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna’s - both require two separate doses in order to achieve 94-95 per cent immunity.
Pfizer’s second dose is intended to be delivered 21 days after the first, while Moderna’s has a 28-day wait in between doses.
A report released earlier this month from the National Advisory Committee on Immunization says that while it is ideal to follow the vaccine manufacturers’ recommendations, people can wait longer - 42 days or so - for the second dose.
Both Moderna and Pfizer tell CTV News they have no data on the efficacy of their vaccines past the recommended dates.
Hinshaw said there are still “many unknowns” about these particular vaccines but insight into other vaccines may be relevant.
“We know sometimes with some other vaccines that if there is a little bit of a longer interval between first and second dose, that the overall long-lasting immunize response can sometimes be better with a little bit of a longer interval,” she said.
Health Canada’s position on the vaccination schedules is that Canadians “receive both doses of the same vaccine, as close as possible to the authorized dosing regimen for each vaccine.”
Hinshaw says the province will adjust its planning to try and deliver second doses of the vaccine within the 42-day window.
With files from CTVNews.ca