While pharmacies across B.C. are using AstraZeneca for public immunizations for people 40 years of age and older, there is no availability currently in the Kootenays. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

While pharmacies across B.C. are using AstraZeneca for public immunizations for people 40 years of age and older, there is no availability currently in the Kootenays. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

No AstraZeneca vaccine availability in Kootenay pharmacies, says Interior Health

Vaccine has been opened up at pharmacies in other areas of the province to people 40 years of age and older

As the province rolls out the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine to pharmacies across the province for public immunizations, there’s one region where there won’t be any immediate availability.

The Kootenays.

AstraZeneca, one of four approved COVID-19 vaccines in Canada, is being distributed to pharmacies in the Lower Mainland, Okanagan, central and northern BC, and Vancouver Island for people 40 years of age and older. However, there are no pharmacies in the Kootenays east of Vernon earmarked for AstraZeneca supply, according to the British Columbia Pharmacy Association.

Interior Health says it made recommendations for which communities to consider prioritizing with AstraZeneca based on COVID-19 activity and risk, following a media inquiry.

“As the provincial rollout accelerates, elements of the strategy are re-evaluated to ensure our campaign is targeted and strategic,” according to IH statement. “We are seeing targeted clinics activated in high-risk areas throughout the province and if the risk increases locally, we will provide ongoing updates to any changes in the campaign approach.”

Currently, AstraZeneca is also being utilized in specific communities or neighbourhoods in Metro Vancovuer through clinics that are being set up to respond to high-risk areas.

AstraZeneca was distributed to provincial pharmacies after the rollout was put on pause in order to scrutinize reported claims of blood-clotting that were made by various global regulators. However, Health Canada issued an update on April 14 regarding the use of AstraZeneca, stating that “no specific risk factors” have been identified after a review of data from the United Kingdom and Europe.

Additional guidance from the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) regarding AstraZeneca is expected in the coming days.

The federal government’s forecasted vaccine allocation shows that there were 203,800 doses of U.S. AstraZeneca sent to British Columbia between March 29 – April 4, while a further 42,900 doses of the COVAX AstraZeneca were sent to the province between April 5-11.



trevor.crawley@cranbrooktownsman.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Just Posted

File photo
Paramedic training returning to Castlegar

Emergency Medical Responder and Primary Care Paramedic training to take place in Castlegar

Doses of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine are seen being prepared on Wednesday, May 12, 2021, in Decatur, Ga. Hundreds of children, ages 12 to 15, received the Pfizer vaccine at the DeKalb Pediatric Center, just days after it was approved for use within their age group. (AP Photo/Ron Harris)
One death, 60 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

The death is connected to the outbreak at Spring Valley long-term care in Kelowna

South Okanagan MP Richard Cannings wants to see dental coverage for all Canadians. (courtesy of Pixabay)
OPINION: South Okanagan MP fights for universal dental care

One in three Canadians have no dental coverage, with COVID making it even worse

COVID-19 cases are once again dropping across the West Kootenay. Illustration: BC Centre for Disease Control
Ten new cases of COVID-19 in Nelson area

Numbers are steadily dropping across the West Kootenay

Dep. Fire Chiefs Rich Piché (left) and Stephane Dionne said they were disappointed that only one person showed up at the George Evans fire hall’s recruitment drive Tuesday evening, May. 11. Photo: Laurie Tritschler
Grand Forks Fire/Rescue says rural fire hall at risk of closing

Home insurance could spike across North Fork if George Evans fire hall loses fire protection status

Conservation Service Officer Kyle Bueckert holds a gold eagle that was revived from acute rodent poisoning Monday, May 12. Photo: Submitted
Grand Forks residents, Conservation Service Officer save poisoned eagle

CSO Kyle Bueckert released the eagle into the wild Thursday, May 13

The bodies of Carlo and Erick Fryer were discovered by a local couple walking on a remote forest road in Naramata on May 10. (Submitted)
Kamloops brothers identified as pair found dead near Penticton

The bodies of Carlo and Erick Fryer were discovered by a local couple walking

Municipal governments around B.C. have emergency authority to conduct meetings online, use mail voting and spend reserve funds on operation expenses. (Penticton Western News)
Online council meetings, mail-in voting option to be extended in B.C.

Proposed law makes municipal COVID-19 exceptions permanent

A nurse prepares a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in Kelowna on Tuesday, March 16. (Phil McLachlan/Black Press)
British Columbians aged 20+ can book for vaccine Saturday, those 18+ on Sunday

‘We are also actively working to to incorporate the ages 12 to 17 into our immunization program’

The AstraZeneca-Oxford University vaccine. (AP/Eranga Jayawardena)
2nd person in B.C. diagnosed with rare blood clotting after AstraZeneca vaccine

The man, in his 40s, is currently receiving care at a hospital in the Fraser Health region

Brian Peach rescues ducklings from a storm drain in Smithers May 12. (Lauren L’Orsa video screen shot)
VIDEO: Smithers neighbours rescue ducklings from storm drain

Momma and babies made it safely back to the creek that runs behind Turner Way

Signage for ICBC, the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, is shown in Victoria, B.C., on February 6, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
$150 refunds issued to eligible customers following ICBC’s switch to ‘enhanced care’

Savings amassed from the insurance policy change will lead to one-time rebates for close to 4 million customers

The Libby Dam on the Kootenai River in Montana. The dam created the Koocanusa Reservoir, which straddles the B.C./Montana border. (photo courtesy Wikipedia)
Outflow at Libby Dam to be increased

Volume increase to aid migration and spawning conditions for endangered white sturgeon in the Kootenai River

Police investigate a fatal 2011 shooting in a strip mall across from Central City Shopping Centre, which was deemed a gang hit. The Mayor’s Gang Task Force zeroed in on ways to reduce gang involvement and activity. (File photo)
COVID-19 could be a cause in public nature of B.C. gang violence: expert

Martin Bouchard says the pandemic has changed people’s routines and they aren’t getting out of their homes often, which could play a role in the brazen nature of shootings

Most Read