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Unvaccinated Albertans are majority of COVID cases, hospitalizations, deaths: Hinshaw

Alberta chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw updates media on the COVID-19 situation in Edmonton on Friday, March 20, 2020. Alberta is banning most visits to long-term care and group homes in order to limit the spread of COVID-19.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

CALGARY — Alberta’s top doctor says the majority of the province’s new COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths are among those who are unvaccinated or within two weeks of their first shot.

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, says in a social media post that 96 per cent of Albertans who have tested positive for the virus since Jan. 1 hadn’t had two doses of vaccine.

She says 91 per cent of COVID-19 deaths and 95 per cent of hospital and intensive care unit admissions followed the same trend in the past month.


Hinshaw says the two mRNA vaccines, Moderna and Pfizer, are performing slightly better than AstraZeneca in protecting against symptomatic infection, but all have been effective in combating severe outcomes.

With the Delta variant, which was first detected in India, she says one dose of vaccine is 57 per cent effective and two doses are 85 per cent effective.

Hinshaw says two doses of vaccine have also proven 91 per cent effective against the Alpha variant, first identified in the United Kingdom.