AstraZeneca a hot commodity as B.C. pharmacies rush to keep up with demand
VANCOUVER -- Five minutes after the BC government announced adults born in 1981 and earlier can get the AstraZeneca vaccine, a Burnaby pharmacy was getting calls for bookings.
“The phones started ringing off the hook,” said Azmina Jiwa, owner of Bonsor Pharmacy. “We’re coping well. We’re going home tired but, but we’re coping well.”
Jiwa figured she has enough vaccine doses to last about three weeks. She will request more, because appointments are filling quickly.
“I dreamt about making appointments last night, I dreamt that the phone was ringing,” said employee Kris Osmond. “It’s a non-stop thing, but it’s worth it.”
Appointments at most big box stores are already full.
London Drugs now has 47 pharmacy locations in B.C. helping with the AstraZeneca rollout, but demand has already exceeded its supply. Most locations now have a wait list.
“As we get more supply we will continue to add more appointments to meet public demand,” the retailer confirmed in a statement.
CTV News found most of the smaller mom and pop pharmacies still had doses available, but they too were going quickly.
Other pharmacies told CTV News they were unaware they are on the government’s official rollout list, and are scrambling to book appointments, administer shots, and dispense medicine.