I am sitting here compiling a list of everything I am going to need for the next few weeks.
- Groceries and toiletries for 4 people.
- Six hundred diapers and wipes.
- Ten gallons of milk.
- Toys, games, crafts and dvds to keep us entertained.
- Vitamins to stay healthy.
- Hand sanitizer. Lots.
I will need these things because yesterday you announced there was no more H1N1 vaccine - that it had run out, before I was able to get to a clinic with my two young children. And therefore I will be avoiding taking my two little children to public places and will instead be staying home.
Hopefully more vaccine will be available soon, given that six months ago the results of a poll stated that between 48-55% of Albertans intended on getting the vaccine. To date only 10% of Albertans have been vaccinated.
And you did promise that everyone could have the vaccine. Remember?
You opened four clinics in Calgary last Monday. Four clinics. To serve more than 1 million people.
And it soon became clear there was no strategy in place to give priority to high risk individuals, despite Alberta's pandemic plan, which clearly states high risk people should be vaccinated first.
I did not take my children last week, because queuing with two children under the age of three for anywhere between two and seven hours would not have been possible. Instead I arranged for my husband to take a few hours off work next week, in the hopes that the queues would be shorter by then.
But then last night, I learned from a friend on Twitter that you had decided to close all Alberta clinics.
Some people are a bit upset by this.
Understandable if you think about it: Albertans have been stirred into a swine flu fearing frenzy for the better part of the year. Then, when the clinics finally opened, they were too few and poorly managed. And high risk people were not given priority. And then, with little warning, they were closed.
So yes, people are pissed.
Your response was "All I can point to is the fact we have 10 per cent of our population vaccinated, including all of those high risk categories, and we're not even into November yet."
I would be willing to place a wager that not all high risk categories have been vaccinated.
In the mean time, please send all the above supplies to me. Because there is no more vaccine for now. So I am going to be here, in my house with my two restless children, avoiding public places. Avoiding the flu that you spent so long telling me I needed to protect my family from.
And next time, perhaps after you have spent so many months whipping up public fear, you could have a little more foresight in your planning.
Cartoon from churchtimes.co.uk