Prairie Post (West Edition)
Frigid temperatures doesn’t hinder Siksika elders from receiving COVID vaccines
The freezing temperatures did not have a big effect on the numbers of Siksika Nation elders who first braved the cold to get their COVID-19 vaccine inoculations Feb. 10.
According to Kelsey Solway, a spokesperson for Siksika Health Services, they received 600 doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine that was delivered on Feb. 8.
The doses will be allocated as first dose vaccines for Siksika Nation Elders who are 65 years of age and over.
Roll-out began with Elders 75 years of age and older through Feb. 10-12 at the Deerfoot Sportsplex, and by appointment at the Siksika Health and Wellness Centre.
Vaccine availability will be expanded to those within the 65-75 age group during the week of Feb. 15.
The 600 doses will not be used as a second dose for those who have already received a first dose. Separate allotments are expected for second doses. Unfortunately, the vaccine shortage in Alberta may have an effect on the number of vaccines that Siksika acquires.
“At this time, Siksika is working with other partners on plans to immunize Nation members who live off-reserve. We will continue to advocate for additional COVID-19 vaccine doses for vulnerable nation members and caregivers. At this time though, we will move forward with Elder immunization, as our Nation members 65 and over are at greater risk of serious illness if they contract COVID-19,” explains Solway. “First Nations have been recognized as a priority population for COVID-19 immunization by the National Advisory Committee on Immunization. We are pleased to see that a safe and effective vaccine has been developed so quickly and made available to our most vulnerable Nation members and their care providers.
Solway adds Siksika Health Services continues to plan for a staged roll-out of additional immunizations to other priority groups in the near future.