Winnipeg adults cancelling Pfizer vaccine bookings to make room for youth amid supply issues

After the Manitoba government said a Pfizer supply slowdown would impact vaccine bookings for youth, it appears some adults in Winnipeg are now cancelling their appointments in an effort to get more young people vaccinated sooner.

Cassie Varga, a 16-year-old cashier, spent about an hour refreshing the government’s vaccine booking website until an opening finally popped up for July 9.

“I was like, ‘Yes, I’m getting my second shot, I can be fully vaccinated for the summer, it’s going to be great,’” Cassie said.

“But I’m very thankful for whoever cancelled their appointment.”

Read more: COVID-19: Lineup for walk-in Pfizer vaccinations spans blocks in Osborne Village

Cassie doesn’t know who cancelled their appointment, or for what reason, but she has a feeling that person was over the age of 18 and decided to go for a Moderna shot instead.

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Since the only COVID-19 vaccine approved for people under the age of 18 in Canada is the Pfizer vaccine, Cassie’s mom, Avril French Varga, said she had a couple friends cancel their Pfizer appointments with the intention of opening spots for youth.

French Varga is grateful that some adults are making switch.

“We see the impact it’s (the pandemic) having on kids,” she said. “The faster we all do it (get vaccinated) the faster we can get through this.”

Read more: Some Canadians denied Moderna COVID-19 shots amid Pfizer delays

Amanda Sanburn, who received AstraZeneca for her first shot, is able to get either Pfizer or Moderna for her second dose.

She had a Pfizer appointment booked, but decided to cancel after the province announced supply issues.

“Doesn’t matter to me if I get AstraZeneca or Pfizer or Moderna, and for some other people, you know, kids 12-17, they have to get that vaccine, there’s no other option for them,” Sanburn said.

“Without question I immediately went in and switched it.”

The move worked out better for Sanburn as she was able to book a Moderna appointment two weeks earlier than her original Pfizer appointment.

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Manitoba recently hit Canada Day reopening plan vaccination targets, but how much restrictions will be reduced won’t come until later this week.

Click to play video: 'New reopening details expected as Manitoba hits COVID-19 vaccination target: Roussin' New reopening details expected as Manitoba hits COVID-19 vaccination target: Roussin

New reopening details expected as Manitoba hits COVID-19 vaccination target: Roussin

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