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Risk groups prioritized

A dwindling supply of H1N1 vaccine will start flowing again by the endof the week — but only for pregnant women and young children.

A dwindling supply of H1N1 vaccine will start flowing again by the end of the week — but only for pregnant women and young children.

Health officials revealed plans for the revamped outbreak control campaign yesterday, announcing children between six months and five years can receive their shots starting tomorrow, and pregnant women starting Friday.

“It’s really a no brainer, in a way, to target these groups,” said Dr. Andre Corriveau, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, adding the groups are at highest risk for serious effects after infection.

Over 10,000 Edmonton children have already been vaccinated. With 200,000 remaining units, and 80,000 due to arrive later this week, Dr. Gerry Predy, Alberta Health Services’ senior medical officer of health, assured there will be enough in stock to vaccinate all Albertans in both risk groups.

Talks will resume on opening clinics for additional high-risk groups next week, when more vaccine is delivered.

Officials pleaded for patience yesterday with frustrated Albertans, some of whom were turned away from clinics multiple times.

It was recently revealed the entire Calgary Flames team received flu shots last week.

Officials say the rogue vaccinations are under investigation by Alberta Health Services.

“It’s unfortunate, and I can’t defend it,” Predy said.

“At this point, we don’t know where they got it from,” Corriveau added.

Predy claimed no vaccines were set aside for any other priority groups.

Meanwhile, a Calgary paper published an editorial yesterday calling for the resignation of the Health Minister Ron Liepert.

During question period, opposition leaders attacked the Tory government for initially urging all Albertans to get inoculated, without foreseeing a shortage.

When asked if Liepert and Corriveau would be fired, Premier Ed Stelmach said he has “every confidence” in both men.

Corriveau couldn’t predict yesterday when vaccinations for all Albertans will resume.

For clinic locations and hours, visit albertahealthservices.ca.

 
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