During the Dec. 9th COVID-19 update, Alberta Health minister Shandro was able to provide some good news with regards to the vaccine arriving in Alberta.

"We are planning specifically to begin on Wednesday, Dec. 16," says Shandro. "We are activating out plans to begin vaccinating the first group of healthcare workers to protect those caring for our most vulnerable."

There will be 3,900 doses of the vaccine coming to Alberta next week that will be distributed to ICU doctors, nurses, and long-term care workers in Calgary and Edmonton. 

Eligibility will begin with workers at the highest risk facilities.

Immunization of seniors and other at-risk groups are set to start in 2021.

The Pfizer vaccines must be stored at very cold temperatures and there are 8 ultra-cold freezers now installed at eight locations across Alberta.

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw provided an update on the numbers.

  • Alberta saw another 1,460 new cases with just over 16,800 tests performed for a positivity rate of 8.9 per cent
  • There are 685 people in hospital with 121 in ICU
  • Cochrane is holding at 66 cases while Rocky View County also holds at 149
  • So far, 52,636 people have recovered from the virus.

Minister Shandro and Dr. Hinshaw both stressed that while the arrival of the vaccine is good news, it is vitally important to continue to follow all health guidelines.