PM meeting opposition leaders, as uncertainty swirls around doling out vaccine doses
|CTVnews 19 Nov 2020 at 15:57|
OTTAWA -- Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is holding a closed-door meeting with his opposition counterparts and receiving a briefing from Canadas top public health officials, as uncertainty swirls around how many vaccine doses the federal government will be sending to the provinces and when that will happen.
Despite officials in both Ontario and Alberta staking claims to a specific number of early vaccine doses, federal officials continue to say its far too early to have the details nailed down about how many vaccines each province will receive once approved by Health Canada, and how quickly doses could get out to each province once that happens.
There are many ongoing preliminary discussions around our plan to roll out vaccines and deliver them across the country. We know that there is still uncertainty as to when those vaccines are going to be manufactured, they are still all in various stages of trials and as much as have signed contracts around delivery dates, we know there are many uncertainties still to come, Trudeau told reporters on Thursday.
The focus that we have as a government is on ensuring that as those vaccines arrive, and are approved safely by health authorities, that they get delivered as quickly as possible to vulnerable Canadians as a priority and then to all Canadians. We re working closely with the provinces in terms of establishing what those are, but these discussions are still at a preliminary stage.
On Wednesday, Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott said the province expects to receive a combined 2.4 million doses of the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines during the first three months of 2021, with more to follow after that.
Speaking to CTVs Power Play Wednesday, Health Parliamentary Secretary Darren Fisher went as far as to say he was not aware of where Elliot got her numbers from.
Asked on Thursday whether Elliot was wrong to come out with the figures she did, Trudeau would only say that there are many numbers circulating and its too early to confirm, despite
Its possible the conversation around vaccine distribution will come up during Trudeaus sit down with opposition leaders, as preliminary but promising news from both Moderna and Pfizer has caused a whirlwind of questions about how the vaccine would be rolled out in Canada. Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam also signalled earlier in the week that updated COVID-19 national modelling will be presented shortly, as cases continue to climb and few regions are showing signs of flattening their COVID-19 curves.