Nolan's Pharmasave in downtown Vernon received 200 AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines Friday, April 9, 2021. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)

AstraZeneca vaccines arrive at Vernon pharmacies

Four pharmacies in the city received doses of the COVID-19 inoculant Friday

COVID-19 vaccines have arrived at Vernon pharmacies Friday.

Nolan’s Pharmasave on 30th Avenue is one of four pharmacies in the city to receive doses of AstraZeneca April 9, the others being the Polson Park and 27th Street Shoppers Drug Marts and the Superstore Pharmasave on Anderson Way.

At Nolan’s, the shots are available to anyone aged 55 to 65 as long as it’s their first dose. Pharmacist and partner Will Bely said people can call Nolan’s at 250-542-4181 (ext. 1) to book an appointment, but added he expects the 200 vaccines that were supplied on short notice will run out soon.

“All we’ve been doing today is answering phone calls and booking appointments so I’m thinking in a couple of hours we’re going to have them all booked,” he told the Morning Star early Friday afternoon.

Vaccines are beginning to reach arms outside of the public health stream. Under Phase 2, Interior Health (IH) is currently administering shots for the general public ages 80 and up.

The province is looping pharmacies into the overall vaccine rollout, providing shots directly to pharmacies without IH involvement. But with demand outweighing supply the local pharmacy rollout appears to be a bit of a scramble. Bely said he received a call on Wednesday asking if the pharmacy was interested in getting vaccines. He was then told the vaccines “may” arrive in a few days.

“It was a vague call,” he said. “We knew it was supposed to come but we weren’t sure until this morning when it did actually show up.”

The team then scrambled to set up a vaccination clinic, and Bely says to help ensure social distancing the pharmacy will be run as a clinic on Sunday, and everyone who booked a vaccine will get their shot done in a single block of time.

READ MORE: Don’t line up for vaccines unless asked to come, Dr. Bonnie Henry warns

Bely’s team doesn’t know when their vaccine supply will be replenished. Meanwhile, down the street at Pivot Rx, co-founder Josh Brady says the fledgling pharmacy is unsure when it will receive its first batch.

He says that’s because the distribution is being based on the 2019 flu season, and they weren’t in business at the time.

“That’s what they did on the coast for their initial rollout, they just picked the highest volume flu shot providers to get (vaccines) as soon as possible,” Brady said.

Having opened doors during the pandemic, Pivot Rx is set up well for COVID-19 shots, with private consultation rooms that can easily be made into vaccination booths.

B.C. has suspended the use of AstraZeneca for people under age 55 based on guidance from Health Canada and the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI), because the Cambridge vaccine has resulted in a rare but serious blood clotting event.

“These events are called vaccine-induced prothrombotic immune thrombocytopenia (VIPIT) and have happened primarily among women under the age of 55,” the BC Centre for Disease Control website reads. “There have been fewer than 30 cases identified around the world, primarily in Europe.”

READ MORE: How effective is the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine? What Canadians need to know


Brendan Shykora
Reporter, Vernon Morning Star
Email me at Brendan.Shykora@vernonmorningstar.com
Follow us: Facebook | Twitter

Coronavirusvaccines

Just Posted

The bodies of Carlo and Erick Fryer were discovered by a local couple walking on a remote forest road in Naramata on May 10. (Submitted)
Kamloops brothers identified as pair found dead near Penticton

The bodies of Carlo and Erick Fryer were discovered by a local couple walking

Jane Long-Haggerty, a chartered accountant with a member of the Salvation Army Food Bank, hold up a cheque for $740. Long-Haggerty decided to cut her fees in half and ask her clients to donate whatever they felt they could to the food bank. The idea landed her a room full of food and $740 to the Salvation Army Food Bank. (Submitted)
Penticton accounting firm gives big return to food bank

Long-Haggerty said this year’s tax season showed how bad the pandemic has impacted everyone

Doses of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine are seen being prepared on Wednesday, May 12, 2021, in Decatur, Ga. Hundreds of children, ages 12 to 15, received the Pfizer vaccine at the DeKalb Pediatric Center, just days after it was approved for use within their age group. (AP Photo/Ron Harris)
One death, 60 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

The death is connected to the outbreak at Spring Valley long-term care in Kelowna

The manager and a worker at the Penticton Great Canadian Oil Exchange in front of the new sea-can. (Submitted)
Kelowna and Penticton oil recycling facilities get upgrades

The BC Used Oil Management Association provided grant funding for the upgrades

The SS Sicamous was decked out in poppies on Remembrance Day and lights at Christmas time. The Sicamous won’t be able to open again because of COVID restrictions. (Monique Tamminga - File photo)
The SS Sicamous was decked out in poppies on Remembrance Day and lights at Christmas time. The Sicamous won’t be able to open again because of COVID restrictions. (Monique Tamminga - File photo)
Penticton’s historic paddlewheeler likely won’t open for a second year

The SS Sicamous Society is getting lots of restoration work done during the closure

Prince Rupert was one of the first B.C. communities targeted for mass vaccination after a steep rise in infections. Grey area marks community-wide vaccine distribution. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. tracks big drop in COVID-19 infections after vaccination

Prince Rupert, Indigenous communities show improvement

Municipal governments around B.C. have emergency authority to conduct meetings online, use mail voting and spend reserve funds on operation expenses. (Penticton Western News)
Online council meetings, mail-in voting option to be extended in B.C.

Proposed law makes municipal COVID-19 exceptions permanent

A nurse prepares a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in Kelowna on Tuesday, March 16. (Phil McLachlan/Black Press)
British Columbians aged 20+ can book for vaccine Saturday, those 18+ on Sunday

‘We are also actively working to to incorporate the ages 12 to 17 into our immunization program’

The Maritime Kitchen Party is featured in the B-Side, the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre’s online series, May 13-16. (VDPAC photo)
B-Side keeps Okanagan musicians in Focus

Performing Arts Centre online concerts continue

The AstraZeneca-Oxford University vaccine. (AP/Eranga Jayawardena)
2nd person in B.C. diagnosed with rare blood clotting after AstraZeneca vaccine

The man, in his 40s, is currently receiving care at a hospital in the Fraser Health region

The. B.C. Court of Appeal granted a retrial to former Vernon man William Schneider, convicted of second-degree murder in the 2016 death of Japanese exchange student Natsumi Kogawa. The trial is set to begin May 24, 2022. (Vancouver Police Department photo)
Retrial date set for former Okanagan man’s murder conviction

William Schneider’s trial, connected to the death of Natsumi Kogawa, is set for May 2022

Brian Peach rescues ducklings from a storm drain in Smithers May 12. (Lauren L’Orsa video screen shot)
VIDEO: Smithers neighbours rescue ducklings from storm drain

Momma and babies made it safely back to the creek that runs behind Turner Way

Signage for ICBC, the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, is shown in Victoria, B.C., on February 6, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
$150 refunds issued to eligible customers following ICBC’s switch to ‘enhanced care’

Savings amassed from the insurance policy change will lead to one-time rebates for close to 4 million customers

Police investigate a fatal 2011 shooting in a strip mall across from Central City Shopping Centre, which was deemed a gang hit. The Mayor’s Gang Task Force zeroed in on ways to reduce gang involvement and activity. (File photo)
COVID-19 could be a cause in public nature of B.C. gang violence: expert

Martin Bouchard says the pandemic has changed people’s routines and they aren’t getting out of their homes often, which could play a role in the brazen nature of shootings

Most Read