Ottawa-Canada will receive a high dose of the new COVID-19 vaccine this week and will receive approximately 3.3 million vaccines from various pharmaceutical companies in the coming days.
The expected influx marks the single largest week of delivery to Canada since the start of the pandemic, thanks to planned shipments from three different sources.
According to the Public Health Agency of Canada, Pfizer and BioNTech are expected to ship nearly 1.2 million times this week, and both companies continue to send shots at a rapid pace.
The federal government also predicts that the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine will be given approximately 1.5 million times from the United States on Tuesday. It arrives by truck and is the first to arrive from the south of the border.
All Canadian vaccines to date are from Europe, except that AstraZeneca was vaccinated 500,000 times from India earlier this month.
The government also says Moderna will be successful with the promised delivery of 600,000 shots next Thursday. This is about a week behind expectations.
Moderna should have shipped about 846,000 shots to Canada last week, but only a few were actually delivered as the company and government described it as a backlog of quality assurance tests.
The federal government reported that Canada had received more than 6 million doses as of last week, causing a flood of expected new vaccine doses. This was a few days earlier than expected.
According to covid19tracker.ca, more than 5 million of these were administered as of Sunday afternoon. Currently, more than 11% of the population receives at least one dose.
The vaccination campaign continues as concerns about the deadly third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic continue to spread to different parts of the country.
The federal government is also noting that the European Union and India are considering export restrictions on vaccines produced within the border.
“We are closely monitoring the global environment, including export restrictions in many jurisdictions,” Public Procurement Minister Anita Anand said on Friday.
“Our staff and our suppliers across many departments are working ahead of time to ensure that Canadian vaccines continue to arrive in our country.”
By Lee Berthiaume