Vaccination time: a day in the life
We’re proud to support Calgary’s Covid-19 vaccination effort by investing in the space needed at the Calgary Telus Convention Centre.
Curious to know what it’s like? We joined up with Calgarian Dani Pena, who made an appointment through Alberta Health Services online at alberta.ca/vaccine. Once she had her appointment confirmed, Dani headed downtown to join the queue to get vaccinated.
If you are taking Transit you can pick up two Transit tickets before you leave: one to reimburse you for your ride to the centre, and one ticket home. Look for attendants wearing blue vests and remember to show your validated ticket or bus transfer as proof of travel. There’s also limited free parking available. Start a free 90-minute session at a pay machine or download the MyParking app.
When Dani entered the well-marked lineup along Stephen Avenue, she says she was surprised at how many citizens were ready to get the jab. “I’m very excited to see the turnout and to know that so many people are excited and willing to get the shot,” she said. “I know there’s been a lot of concerns about symptoms you might experience but it’s great to see people coming out and bearing the lineups.”
While the turnout was impressive, the line moves efficiently, something that was a surprise to experience as Dani made her way through the marked pathway taking citizens through the convention centre rooms and walkways en route to the main vaccination station.
Next up Dani chatted with staff who are asking pre-screening questions to ensure Dani wasn’t experiencing symptoms, had been travelling outside the country, or had come into contact with confirmed cases. She moved to a handwashing station and a fresh mask exchange before heading into the last stretch. Dani says she did not have jitters but was excited to get her shot: “I’ve been looking forward to this day and hoping that the countdown for our eligibility comes up soon. Really it just means that hopefully we can get closer to seeing friends and family which is a very big thing for me, I live alone and that isolates a lot of my social connections. I do also have a lot of my family immunocompromised. So being able to get this shot means I am getting closer to seeing them and not being concerned about getting them infected or spreading it to even people who aren’t in my circle.”
After showing her required identification (which can be your Alberta Health Care card, driver's license, Social Insurance Number, birth certificate or passport) and answering some questions, Dani received her vaccination and was swiftly back on the move out of the convention centre with her complementary Transit tickets in hand.
Calgarians are encouraged to get vaccinated as soon as you are eligible. Dani has advice for others considering getting vaccinated: “For me, when a shot is available your opportunity to get it is when you should be getting it. Be patient, I know the lineups do look daunting but they are moving and once you get inside you’ll feel a lot better about it.”
Calgarians are encouraged to check the Alberta Health Services (AHS) website for their eligibility and to book an appointment using AHS’ online booking tool, available at www.ahs.ca/covidvaccine, or by calling Health Link at 811, where service is available in 240 languages.