As Saskatchewan continues its push to get everyone in the province vaccinated as soon as possible to limit the spread of COVID-19, the premier said the eligibility age for AstraZeneca is under review.
“Half of Saskatchewan residents over the age of 40 have now received their first dose of a COVID vaccine, significantly lowering the risk of severe outcomes from COVID,” Scott Moe said in a Tweet Monday.
“To ensure more Saskatchewan residents have access to a COVID vaccine as quickly as possible, Saskatchewan is actively reviewing lowering the eligibility age for the AstraZeneca vaccine to residents aged 40+ following Health Canada guidance and similar decisions by Alberta and Ontario.”
Canada’s federal health minister, Patty Hajdu, announced Sunday said that provinces and territories were “free to use” AstraZeneca’s vaccine on any groups aged 18 and above, despite the country’s National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) recommendation to not give the vaccine to those under 55.
Hours later, both Alberta and Ontario said they would start administrating the AstraZeneca vaccine to those aged 40 and older.
“This decision is based on growing scientific knowledge about the vaccine and is based on Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health’s advice,” Kenney wrote in Tweet Sunday evening. “Details will follow tomorrow (Monday) morning and bookings will open for Tuesday.”
Albertans 40 years of age and older can now book their appointments as of 8 a.m. Tuesday.
In a statement Sunday, a spokesperson for Ontario’s Health Minister Christine Elliott said, “based on current supply,” pharmacies and primary care settings in the province would be offering the vaccines to the now larger age group starting Tuesday.
— with files from the Canadian Press and Global News’ Katrina Ramlochan, Hannah Jackson, Saba Aziz, Twinkle Ghosh and David Lao.
© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.
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