The Ontario government is calling on the feds to develop a clear plan for the delivery of a COVID-19 vaccine.
Premier Doug Ford says Canada can’t be last in line to get a vaccine and has told the Prime Minister to make sure provinces are ready for the first shipment, “I’m calling on the Prime Minister today to provide certainty that the contracts we’ve signed are rock solid and that Ottawa will provide detailed information to support provincial planning, including when, how much, and what type of each vaccine we’re getting. The sooner we get a vaccine, the sooner we can offer that added protection for our frontline staff and most vulnerable, take the pressure off of our hospitals, and begin to return life back to normal.”
The province has pegged General (retired) Rick Hillier to head up the new Ministers’ COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Task Force. The task force will plan and execute the distribution of the vaccine including storing it, “It was my duty to agree to the Premier’s request to lead the task force in this war to defeat COVID-19,” said General Hillier. “We will be ready as of December 31, 2020, to receive the vaccine, no matter when it arrives, and to ensure the people of Ontario are vaccinated. Our task force team is integrated, professional, and committed.”
The vaccines do pose a logistical challenge as some need to be stored in sub-zero temperatures and that’s why Ford says we need answers, “Each vaccine comes with a unique requirement and challenges, we need a clear line of sight for how many vaccines we will be getting.”
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he expects half of Canadians will be vaccinated by September.
Meanwhile, the province has announced further public health measures for five public health regions across the province. The following regions have been moved up a tier in the government’s framework:
- Windsor-Essex County Health Unit.
- Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit.
- Hastings Prince Edward Public Health
- Lambton Public Health; and
- Northwestern Health Unit.