Edmonton and Calgary will receive thousands of new doses of the COVID-19 vaccine over the next few days.
On Tuesday, the province announced they received their second shipment of the Pfizer vaccine that will roll out to health care and long-term care workers across the province.
The 25,350 vaccine doses will be divided up throughout the province, with Edmonton and Calgary set to receive 6,825 doses each. Red Deer will receive 1,950 doses.
The remaining vaccine will go to sites in Brooks, Camrose, Drumheller, Edson, Fort McMurray, Grande Prairie, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Pincher Creek and St. Paul, with these communities receiving 975 doses each.
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney said the province is off to a "strong start" on vaccinations.
"We have been ready to receive and administer vaccine since day one – and we will be ready to safely and quickly distribute all future doses into the arms of Albertans,” Kenney said in a press release.
Alberta received its first Pfizer vaccine shipment of 3,900 doses on Dec. 14. Since then, 3,074 health-care workers have received their first shots.
Because of the vaccine’s ultra-cold storage requirements, the first doses are being given to health-care professionals, including ICU doctors, nurses, respiratory therapists and long-term care workers in Calgary and Edmonton.
As more shipments arrive in early January, immunization will focus on Phase 1 priority populations, including residents of long-term care homes and supportive living facilities, followed by seniors aged 75 and up, First Nations on reserve, Inuit and on-settlement Métis individuals aged 65 and over.
Phase 2 is still expected to start by April next year and will be targeted for the next groups of prioritized populations. Final decisions regarding eligibility in Phase 2 have not yet been determined.
Phase 3 will involve rolling out vaccinations to the general Alberta population, which is anticipated to start later in 2021.