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Alberta watching no-show vaccine appointments after social media claims of false bookings

Click to play video: 'COVID-19: Alberta legal experts concerned with potential vaccine-booking interference' COVID-19: Alberta legal experts concerned with potential vaccine-booking interference
WATCH: A day after Alberta Health Services said it was monitoring social media posts alleging multiple appointment bookings being made to prevent others from getting their COVID-19 vaccines, legal experts from the University of Alberta spoke about how dangerous acts like this can be. Matthew Conrod reports. – May 20, 2021

Alberta Health Services says it is monitoring COVID-19 vaccination no-shows following claims on social media that some people are booking several times to try to stop others from getting a shot.

The agency says in a tweet that it shared the information with police and is making sure participating pharmacies are aware of the claims.

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AHS says it has ways to prevent double bookings online or over the phone.

Read more: COVID-19 vaccine: What employers can — and cannot — demand in Canada

AHS says it will keep on eye out for false bookings.

But it adds that, so far, there hasn’t been an increase in missed appointments.

Click to play video: '‘I believe that we will be able to have a summer with many fewer restrictions’: Dr. Deena Hinshaw' ‘I believe that we will be able to have a summer with many fewer restrictions’: Dr. Deena Hinshaw
‘I believe that we will be able to have a summer with many fewer restrictions’: Dr. Deena Hinshaw – May 19, 2021

Dr. Deena Hinshaw said Thursday she’d heard of the reports of the social media posts, but didn’t know the specifics.

“Certainly it’s really important that anyone who is booking an appointment book at one place, ideally the earliest appointment they can get, and not take up appointments that others are eagerly looking for,” she said.

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Hinshaw said the province is “working hard to have a centralized booking system in place,” which Premier Jason Kenney previously said would launch in June. However, she didn’t have a date for when officials anticipate it will be up and running.

She said the centralized booking system would not only streamline the booking process for Albertans, but hopefully prevent people from being able to book multiple appointments at a time to prevent others from getting their shot.

More than 2.27 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in Alberta. Chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said Wednesday that about 50.5 per cent of eligible Albertans 12 and older have received at least one dose of vaccine.

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