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Federal officials vowing to work with provinces after more Moderna delays

Last Updated Apr 15, 2021 at 9:11 am PDT

In this photo illustration a medical syringe seen in front of the Moderna multinational pharmaceutical corporation logo. Netherlands, November 29, 2020. Photo by Robin Utrecht/ABACAPRESS.COM hoto by Robin Utrecht/ABACAPRESS.COM

Canada is once again facing delays when it comes to receiving shipments of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine.

The delivery, which was expected next week, has been pushed into next month.

Canada was initially supposed to receive 500,000 Moderna doses on April 19. That was then pushed back to April 29, and is now not expected until May 3.

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Provinces have complained about the delays from the drugmaker, saying the unpredictability is causing logistical problems for vaccine rollouts.

“We are working closely with provinces and territories to risk manage this efficiently,” said Maj.-Gen. Dany Fortin, who leads Canada’s vaccine distribution efforts. “I think it’s worth mentioning that we are fully aware that provinces are making adjustments and we are trying to narrow this down as much as possible.”

Procurement Minister Anita Anand says the issue surrounding the delays is with Moderna’s quality assurance process, something the company says it is trying to address.

Moderna is expected to deliver 2.8 million doses in May in two separate shipments.

Canada has received 12.7 million doses of Moderna so far, with 8.9 million administered.

Canada still expects every adult who wants a vaccine will have one by the end of September.

Anand says she is in the midst of negotiating new vaccine contracts to nail down supplies of vaccine booster shots if they’re needed next year, though the first priority remains getting doses now.

-With files from The Canadian Press