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‘Pick up the pace:’ Scott Moe pressures feds for more COVID-19 vaccines, Sask. running out

Click to play video 'Scott Moe pressures feds for more COVID-19 vaccines, Sask. running out' Scott Moe pressures feds for more COVID-19 vaccines, Sask. running out
WATCH: As Saskatchewan continues to lead the country in the rate of active COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people, officials are facing yet another hurdle in their immunization plan. – Jan 20, 2021

Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe says the province will run out of COVID-19 vaccines within the next few days and that Canada isn’t doing enough to secure more doses.

“We need the federal government to pick up the pace of vaccine deliveries in the weeks ahead and pick up the pace in their negotiations and discussions with Pfizer, in particular,” Moe said.

“We’ll get back to normal when we have a significant portion of our Saskatchewan population vaccinated, but we do need access to more vaccines in these early days.”

Read more: Nearly half of Saskatchewan’s 225 coronavirus deaths reported in past month

Moe said the province is expecting about 17,500 doses from Pfizer over the next four weeks rather than the 37,000 doses promised.

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“We did almost that many shots this past week alone,” Moe said. “We will need to revise our vaccine rollout plan in the coming weeks because of this latest delay.”

Canada’s Maj.-Gen Dany Fortin said the country would not be receiving any Pfizer vaccines this week. Moe said he is unsure how that is going to impact Saskatchewan in the short term.

“We are in the process of seeking clarification if that will further impact Saskatchewan’s total supply of vaccines over the course of the next four weeks,” Moe said.

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Saskatchewan’s Opposition NDP has been critical of the province’s vaccine rollout plan and points to a specific incident where residents of a Regina care home had to resort to picking names from a hat to see who would receive a COVID-19 vaccine.

Read more: Pandemic housing boom means affordability is no longer just a big-city problem

Residents at Qu’Appelle House said there weren’t enough vaccines for everyone there. Only six of 15 residents reportedly received their shot.

“I’m in real need of the vaccine and if I don’t get it and I get COVID I think the outlook isn’t very good for me,” said Wendell Lindstron, Qu’Appelle House resident.

It’s something Saskatchewan NDP Leader Ryan Meili said is unacceptable.

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“There’s been a lack of communication, lack of a consistent plan from the top. It leaves us with chaos and that’s what we are seeing,” Meili said.

Scott Livingstone, Saskatchewan Health Authority CEO, said SHA will be investigating the situation, but believes there was no ill intention behind the situation at Qu’Appelle House.

Read more: Saskatchewan plans to create coronavirus vaccine TV ads

“Our nurses ended up getting some extra doses,” Livingstone said. “There was a decision made on site to administer a small amount of remaining doses to some of the residents, but not all on the assisted living side.”

He said the frozen vaccines couldn’t be put back in the freezer and didn’t want them to go to waste.

Moe encourages resident so to sign up to get vaccinated as it becomes available and to continue to follow health orders.

“We will get through this as we get more of our population vaccinated, but until then, I’m asking everyone to keep following all of these public health orders that are in place,” Moe said.

“Keep yourself safe, keep those around you safe and keep your family safe.”

The province said 1,957 doses of COVID-19 vaccine were administered on Monday, bringing the total number of vaccines administered in Saskatchewan to 24,575.

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Click to play video 'COVID-19 restrictions extended in Saskatchewan until Jan. 29' COVID-19 restrictions extended in Saskatchewan until Jan. 29
COVID-19 restrictions extended in Saskatchewan until Jan. 29 – Jan 13, 2021