Opposition slams Trudeau government over COVID-19 vaccine delays

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speak to the media about the COVID-19 virus outside Rideau Cottage in Ottawa Friday Nov. 20 2020

Coronavirus | Others to get vaccine first as Canada lacks production capacity, says Justin Trudeau

She added that the federal government is working to procure "a diverse portfolio of a variety of different kinds of vaccines, and we are working diligently with all three of the leading manufacturers that have submitted for regulatory approval".

Scott Moe took a jab at Prime Minister Justin Trudeau over COVID-19 vaccines Wednesday.

"I think we all need to be cognizant of the fact that even if the vaccines were going to begin delivery and deployment early in 2021, it wasn't going to be for the vast majority of citizens, and we were going to need to focus on all the important risk mitigation strategies that have benefited us up to this point in time, and we would need to do that for several months thereafter", he said.

While Sanofi has a vaccine plant in Toronto and GlaxoSmithKline has one in Quebec, both make protein-based vaccines, such as the more familiar ones Canadians get every year for the flu. Mr. Trudeau wouldn't say when Canadians can look forward to the return to normal that would come with a vaccine roll-out. This vaccine similarly spurs the body to generate an immune response that will attack a real SARS-CoV-2 virus in the future and prevent the patient from developing COVID-19.

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"It is premature to start crossing out, circling dates on a calendar", he said.

"One is like making wine, one's like making Coke", Andrew Casey, the CEO of BioteCanada, told The Canadian Press Wednesday. Yes, you can drink both out of a glass.

Lonza chairman Albert Baehny said earlier this month the new technology meant Lonza had to remake its production lines to produce the mRNA vaccine.

Due to the urgent need for COVID-19 vaccines, an interim order has provided them with the ability to fast-track the process, including the option to review data on a rolling basis, instead of once all trials are completed.

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Public Services and Procurement Canada said Thursday that the federal government has finalized purchase agreements with five of the seven companies it has been negotiating with, including Pfizer and Moderna, but negotiations are ongoing to finalize purchase agreements with Johnson & Johnson and Novavax.

"The contracts say that we will start to receive the first doses of these vaccines in January and it will ramp up over the months of 2021", Leblanc said. PHAC officials refused to answer this week how many doses are expected initially from AstraZeneca.

In a tweet shared on November 26, the NDP leader said Trudeau had failed to "fix" the issues caused by the Conservative Party in years gone by.

Canada now has enough needles and syringes to administer almost 25 million doses of a vaccine, with more supplies arriving each month, Reza said.

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Moe said Saskatchewan has been asking the federal government to provide funding to Saskatoon's VIDO-InterVac to help with the manufacture of vaccines, but that funding has been slow in coming.

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