The province is using the cash to help people who are struggling to make ends meet.
The money will go towards a $1-million program to help pay for the costs of vaccines and treatment.
The government announced the initiative Tuesday at a news conference in Edmonton.
It’s a part of a $15-billion national effort to contain the spread and reduce deaths.
People can get the vaccinations for free.
The program is a continuation of the Alberta Health Fund, which the province established in 2013 to pay for vaccines.
The fund was supposed to expire in 2019.
“We’re doing the same thing with this program, and we’re doing it at the same time,” said Minister of Health Richard Pless.
“The idea is to do it in parallel and to do so on a case-by-case basis, and the sooner people get the vaccine the better.”
This is a video of the announcement, which has been viewed more than 14 million times.
More than half the Alberta population is living in poverty.
“That’s why we’re trying to make sure that the program that we have here is the right one for people, for the province and for Albertans,” said Pless, who said the program will target those who can afford the vaccine but are struggling financially.
He said the provincial government will spend about $1 million annually.
Pless said the goal is to get people vaccinated within a year.
In 2018, Alberta’s population was about 14 million people.
About 5.6 per cent of the province is living below the poverty line.
The province also said in the announcement that it would spend about 50 per cent more than it has on emergency vaccines, and that it was working on other initiatives to support vulnerable populations.
Alberta Health said in 2018 that the province spent about $20 million on vaccines, including $2.7 million on one batch of the vaccine.
The provincial government has spent about the same amount on vaccines for other emergencies in recent years.
Poulson said the province has seen the health care system deteriorate under the Conservatives and said the Liberals have a plan to fix that.
He pointed to a $400-million investment in the public health system, a plan that was announced in the summer of 2018.
Pleased to see the news today.
Alberta is now working to expand our support to other vulnerable populations in the province, including low-income Albertans, those living in rural areas and people with disabilities.
This will include a $300-million plan to improve the accessibility of health care services for people with mental health challenges and people who struggle to manage their finances.
The NDP government has said the plan would be announced later this month.