Canada has administered fewer COVID-19 vaccines than Bangladesh, Africa and Indonesia, just to name a few, after numerous delays with the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines.
According to Our World in Data, which has been tracking the amount of COVID-19 vaccines administered around the world, says Canada has given out 1.33 million total vaccinations so far.
As of February 18, Canada ranks 25th for countries with the most doses administered, behind Bangladesh and Indonesia, and just ahead of Romania and Mexico. The United States has the highest reported total at 56.28 million, with China sitting second at 40.52 million.
Kenora-Rainy River MPP Greg Rickford, says he and his party are calling on the federal government to increase vaccination efforts immediately.
“This is a huge problem. When you look at our friends with the United States, Americans are being vaccinated at a significant rate, and we’re simply not. A country like Canada should be as deep into our vaccinations as our friends to the south are. We’re not. Vaccines can’t come soon enough.”
Rickford, who also serves as the Minister of Northern Development and Mines, Indigenous Affairs and Energy, notes Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister has said Manitoba would be buying their own doses of the vaccine, instead of waiting for shipments from the federal government.
Ottawa’s seen numerous shipments of Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines delayed recently. Harsh winter storms in the United States delayed a shipment by one day earlier this week, after production delays by both companies earlier this month.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said that every Canadian who wants to get vaccinated will be able to by the end of September 2021. He says reductions in vaccine shipments are expected to be short-lived and were planned for.
Six million doses are still expected by the end of March. The Liberal Party has also given $440 million to COVAX, an international organization that pools purchases of vaccines together, and directs them to developing countries.
Canada was approved for the program, despite not being a developing country, and another 1.9 million doses are now expected. That’s on top of $20 million doses purchased directly from the organization.
Three other companies, Johnson and Johnson, Novavax and AstraZeneca have all submitted COVID-19 vaccines to Health Canada for approvals. Canada’s already purchased $10 million doses from Johnson and Johnson, before receiving any approvals.
Canada also purchased 20 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, which has been approved for use by the World Health Organization, but not by Health Canada at this point. 500,000 additional doses of their vaccine could come to Canada by the end of March, if approved.
For more information:
Rickford offers update on coronavirus cases, vaccinations
MPP Rickford addresses COVID outbreak in the region