After applying for their pharmacy to be a location for local vaccine distribution, Value Drug Mart in Rimbey has been approved by AHS and provincial health authorities.
“We got selected to do it in Rimbey,” says Value Drug Mart Pharmacy Manager, William Poggemiller.
Poggemiller says that Value Drug Mart is expected, although dates may be subject to change, to receive the first shipment of COVID-19 vaccines for the week of March 15.
As far as Poggemiller knows the pharmacy is expected to get approximately 400 vaccines in the first week and hundreds more to follow weekly following that. Poggemiller also says that as far as he knows the pharmacy is expecting the Moderna brand vaccine.
The Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is a two-dose vaccine, the first dose which would be administered through appointment in Rimbey hopefully as early as the end of the week of March 15, 2021.
Poggemiller says that depending on the Moderna Vaccine supply, the second dose could see a delay of up to four months.
Starting March 15, 2021 the Government of Alberta will open up the vaccine rollout program to include individuals 65-years and older to be eligible for vaccination.
Since the start of the vaccine rollout the pharmacy has been receiving plenty of calls from Rimbey residents inquiring about vaccinations and booking their spot on a waitlist that will be consulted when scheduling appointments.
“We have a waitlist of about 500 people,” says Poggemiller.
Poggemiller says that when the vaccines arrive at the pharmacy they will start scheduling appointments for vaccinations. He does mention that your order on the waiting list is subject to change and you could receive a phone call fairly last minute to fill a scheduled spot if someone is unable to make their appointment.
Poggemiller says that they will only be immediately scheduling the appointments for the exact amount of vaccines they receive, but will continue to repeat the process every week as they receive more doses.
The pharmacy recommends booking the vaccine online rather than calling their location.
Individuals will also have to fill out paperwork the day of their appointment stating that they do not have any COVID-19 symptoms, have not recently tested positive for COVID-19, come into contact with anybody who has COVID-19 or that they have not traveled or been in contact with anyone who has traveled in the last 14 days.
It is very important that individuals do not show up for a vaccine without an appointment, as you will be turned away.
In addition, Poggemiller says that it is crucial that everybody be honest on their COVID-19 intake forms for the health of everyone around them.
“A concern that a lot of pharmacists have is that people won’t be forthcoming with their symptoms.” He states that they worry people will lie about their symptoms in order to keep their scheduled vaccine appointment.
Poggemiller assures that if you have to cancel your appointment that you can reschedule your vaccine for a later date when you are no longer experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and have tested negative for the virus.