Premier John Horgan rolls up his sleeve for AstraZenca vaccine

Premier John Horgan addresses the media on Feb. 10, 2021. (B.C. government/Flickr)

B.C.'s premier rolled up his sleeve Friday to get a dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine.

John Horgan tweeted Thursday night that he'd booked his appointment and would receive his first shot at a local pharmacy.

"That's it?" the premier asked after the quick jab.

"I didn't feel it at all, quite frankly … the AstraZeneca product is safe. I've just had it myself, my wife's slated to get her shot next week. I want all British Columbians to take advantage, when you get the call, when you get the opportunity, to get vaccinated." 

Earlier in the week, Horgan said he hasn't observed any vaccine hesitancy in B.C. related to AstraZeneca, which was put under review over its connection to extremely rare blood clots. 

"As we received AstraZeneca, it’s disappeared into the arms of British Columbians," he said at the time.

"The advice I’ve been given today is that you should take the first vaccine that’s offered to you because it's in the interest of not just yourself, but your neighbours, your family, and your community."

After that review, AstraZeneca was given the green light for use by Health Canada on Wednesday, but it's still unclear who will be able to get the shot in B.C. 

The National Advisory Committee on Immunizations will review Health Canada's findings and decide whether to change its current recommendations that those shots only be used in people ages 55 years and older.

B.C.'s 61-year-old premier, however, was eligible to get his dose at a pharmacy.

"Let's show all British Columbians that the best vaccine is the one that's available to you now," he wrote in his post.

As of Thursday, 1,235,863 vaccine doses have been delivered in B.C., with 1,147,964 of those being a first dose.

Health Minister Adrian Dix Thursday said that represents more than 26 per cent of the eligible population of 4.3 million people.

Currently, people born in 1958 or earlier should be receiving booking invitations, if they've registered with the province's vaccination system. Indigenous people aged 18 and older and people who are clinically extremely vulnerable should also be booked for a dose. 

- with files from CTV -