Canada to receive first Pfizer coronavirus vaccines next week
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Monday that Canada will begin receiving the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine from next week.
Driving the news: "The first Canadians will be vaccinated next week if we have approval from Health Canada this week," Trudeau told a briefing confirming that the country will receive up to 249,000 doses of the vaccine by the month's end.
"The regulatory process needs to be as rigorous as it always is. There are no corners cut by Health Canada in terms of approving a vaccine for safe use by Canadians."— Trudeau
Why it matters: Canada has secured more vaccine contracts than any other country, also ordering 40 million doses from Moderna, Bloomberg notes. In total, the country of 37.6 million would have enough to inoculate 154 million people if health regulators deem the vaccines safe.
- Reuters reports that Canadian officials are holding discussions with other governments to donate excess doses to lower-income countries.
The big picture: Canada has seen an uptick in COVID-19 cases in recent weeks. Authorities have imposed new restrictions on cities including the financial capital of Toronto after reporting some 6,000 new infections a day, Bloomberg notes.
- The country reported 6,499 new cases Monday, taking the total to 423,054.