April 30, 2021 – Federal government update on the COVID-19 pandemic
Here is an update on recent decisions and actions by the Canadian government in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic.
State of the pandemic
Dr. Theresa Tam and Dr. Howard Njoo of the Public Health Agency of Canada stated that over 1.2 million cases of COVID-19, including 24,169 deaths, have been reported in Canada. Over the last two weeks, the daily average of reported cases has been below 7,900.
However, the number of serious and critical cases continues to rise. Last week, nearly 4,400 people with COVID-19 were treated in Canadian hospitals each day, including 1,420 people in intensive care.
The majority of COVID-19 cases are now associated with the B117 variant, which accounts for 95% of the variant cases detected so far.
Assistance to the provinces
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stated that, yesterday, he attended the 30th meeting of provincial and territorial premiers since the start of the pandemic.
“My message to the premiers was clear: the federal government is here to help,” said Mr. Trudeau.
Ontario Premier Doug Ford asked the federal government to suspend the arrival of international students at its borders, which Mr. Trudeau agreed to do.
Moreover, the prime minister reiterated the measures instituted at Canada’s land borders. Upon arrival, every traveller must present a negative test done within the last three days, respect a two-week quarantine and be tested again on the eighth day of their quarantine.
Justin Trudeau stressed that his government will continue to help the provinces and territories where the number of COVID-19 cases are spiking, such as Alberta, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Nunavut.
So far, the Canadian government has distributed over 15 million doses of the vaccine across Canada.
On Wednesday, close to 1 million doses arrived in Canada, including the first delivery of the Janssen single-dose vaccine from Johnson & Johnson.
As of next week, Canada will be receiving 2 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine on a weekly basis.
“More and more people are being vaccinated. In several provinces, the vaccination campaign will be opening up to the general population very soon. This is encouraging news,” said Mr. Trudeau.
Protest on May 1 in front of the Olympic Stadium
Prime Minister Trudeau reacted to the protest against the health measures scheduled on Saturday, May 1, in front of Montréal’s Olympic Stadium, a designated COVID-19 vaccination site.
“It is deeply disappointing to see people react like this. The irony here is that by gathering, people are putting each other at risk, spreading further cases of COVID-19,” said Mr. Trudeau.