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Canada secures deal to receive more Pfizer vaccine doses into September

Last Updated Jun 4, 2021 at 10:51 am MDT

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference in Ottawa on Friday, April 23, 2021, during the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

OTTAWA – Canada has secured a deal with Pfizer that will see more vaccine doses from the pharmaceutical giant be delivered into September.

The agreement is for at least 2 million doses of Pfizer-BioNTech’s drug each week until the end of August.

“We’ve also negotiated an option for 3 million more Pfizer doses to be delivered in September,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Friday.

That means Canada should see 21 million doses from Pfizer alone over the months of July, August, and September.

Trudeau says these developments are on top of the progress that’s already been made.

“Sixty-five per cent of eligible Canadians have now received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. That makes Canada the G20 country with the highest percentage of the population with a first shot. That is really encouraging,” he said.

This comes as we continue to wait on a final delivery schedule form Moderna for the end of the month, with the drugmaker shy more than 6 million doses from its target.

Procurement Minister Anita Anand has said she’s been trying to negotiate a deal to get doses of Moderna’s vaccine from the U.S. instead of Europe amid this delay.

All 5.7 million doses delivered to Canada from Moderna so far have come from their production lines in Europe. However, the company’s shipments to Canada have been spotty and small since April 1.

As we continue to see vaccination programs ramp up across the country, there are also increasing calls for Canada to start donating shots to other countries.

Meanwhile, the Conservatives are pressing the federal government to provide more information on what will be required for travel restrictions to be eased.

Tory health critic Michelle Rempel Garner is demanding more details, saying there’s a need for an improved system for detecting variants and an end to hotel quarantines.

“To put forward what benchmarks will be used for safely lifting COVID-19 restrictions within areas of federal jurisdiction,” she said. “Experts from the government’s own COVID-19 testing and screening advisory panel have said that the current system of managing the border is unfair, inconsistent, and not based on science.”