Vaccinations triple after Alberta announces its version of a vaccine passport

COVID-19 vaccinations tripled in Alberta on Thursday, the day after Premier Jason Kenney announced the province’s version of a vaccine passport. 

Alberta Health reported 28,158 doses were administered at Alberta Health Services clinics and pharmacies on Thursday compared to 9,750 on Wednesday.

Kenney announced the new restriction exemption program Wednesday night. 

The new program will allow non-essential businesses like restaurants, pubs and fitness centres to operate normally if they require patrons to show proof of vaccination or a privately-paid polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test from the previous 72 hours with a negative result. 

Businesses that choose not to screen for vaccination status will continue to be subject to restrictions. 

For example, a restaurant that doesn’t screen patrons for proof of vaccination would be closed to indoor dining and would have to end liquor service at 10 p.m. 

The new program starts Monday. 

Kenney and his UCP government resisted implementing a vaccine passport for weeks, even offering a $100 gift card to anyone who received their first or second dose.

That measure resulted only in a modest increase in vaccinations.

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