The CORONAVIRUS REPORT for FRIDAY, DECEMBER 4, 2020

Vaccine won’t be mandatory in Ontario

The province’s chief medical officer of health says it won’t be mandatory for people to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

But Doctor David Williams says it will be required in certain settings.

Williams says they can’t compel people to be vaccinated, but the government can restrict their access to places like schools, long-term care homes, and hospitals if they aren’t inoculated.

He expects that more provincial health units will be moved into zones of stricter controls later today, as the number of coronavirus cases continues to surge in some regions.

But he won’t say which ones will be affected, that decision is being made by the cabinet.

The latest figures show that the infection rate in York Region is now higher than it was in Toronto when that city was placed into lockdown last month.

 

One practice run for vaccine delivery under the belt

The general in charge of the federal government’s vaccine distribution program says they’ll be ready to go before Christmas.

Major-General Dany Fortin says cold-storage points across the country have already been secured for Pfizer’s vaccine, which must be kept at minus-80 degrees Celsius.

The company will be shipping their vaccine directly to those locations.

Fortin says the federal team has already had one practice run, and will hold another in the next week or so.

The first of the initial batch of vaccines is expected to arrive in Canada by the end of this month.

About three-million doses are expected during the first three months of next year.

 

Plans for Ontario distribution of vaccine to be released today

Premier Doug Ford says he’ll be detailing the province’s plans to distribute COVID-19 vaccines later today.

Ford says it will be a logistical nightmare, but the government will be ready when the vaccines arrive, possibly as early as the end of this month.

But he warns the initial supplies will be limited.

Health Minister Christine Elliott says they’re still deciding who will be inoculated first.

But she adds residents of long-term care facilities and those who work in health care will be high on the list.

 

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