After a thorough and independent scientific review, Health Canada approved the Moderna Spikevax Bivalent COVID-19 vaccine as a booster dose for eligible Albertans 18 years and older. The bivalent COVID-19 vaccine triggers a stronger immune response and provides additional protection against both Omicron and the original SARS-CoV-2 virus strain.
Beginning September 21, Alberta residents 18 years and older eligible for the bivalent vaccine will include: People who have completed any primary series, including a mix of AstraZeneca, Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, and have at least five months spacing since the last dose or most recent infection, as well as individuals who have received any number of previous boosters and have at least five months spacing since the last dose or most recent infection.
Albertans who have completed a primary series are eligible for the bivalent vaccine. The recommended interval between doses is a minimum of five months from the last dose or previous infection. Bivalent COVID-19 vaccine is expected to be available in late September/early October for Albertans 12-17 years of age. Additionally, starting the week of October 3, the bivalent booster will be offered to residents of seniors congregate care facilities, along with the influenza vaccine.
A shortened interval of three months can be considered (for individuals at higher risk for severe outcomes, for example), but a longer interval between doses leads to a better immune response against COVID-19 infection that is expected to last longer.
Vaccines will be available at participating pharmacies and community medical clinics and select AHS sites. Bookings will be available through the Alberta Vaccine Booking System at alberta.ca/vaccine or by calling Health Link at 811. Appointments for a shortened interval of at least three months cannot be booked online.
Some pharmacies can accommodate walk-ins. If your local pharmacy is not listed in the booking system, contact them directly or visit bluecross.ca to find a pharmacy near you. Individuals who live on a First Nations reserve can access doses through nursing stations or public health clinics on the reserve.