Canada sees good news about COVID-19 inoculations, could relieve pressure on PM Trudeau

FILE PHOTO: Travellers arriving from the United States enter a tent erected to perform the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) molecular test at one of five initial entry points, at the Champlain-St. Bernard de Lacolle Border Crossing in St. Bernard de Lacolle, Quebec, Canada February 24, 2021. REUTERS/Christinne Muschi

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canada is seeing positive signs that the COVID-19 vaccination campaign is ramping up, health officials said on Thursday, a development that could help relieve pressure on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Critics, seizing on data that show Canada trailing many other nations in the total number of inoculations, accuse Trudeau’s Liberal government of bungling the roll out. Ottawa, which buys the doses, blames temporary supply problems that it says are being ironed out.

Howard Njoo, Canada’s deputy chief public health officer, said more than 240,000 doses had been injected last week, the highest weekly total in more than a month. Canada’s 10 provinces and three northern territories administer the vaccines.

“We are seeing positive signs that the roll out is ramping up…this is a reflection of greater supply,” he told a briefing, saying around 2.9% of Canadians have received at least one dose.

“We expect this percentage to significantly increase throughout March”, he added.

Canada has so far recorded a total of 21,807 deaths and 855,126 cases.

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