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Two dose summer? It's looking more likely, top health official says

Last Updated Jun 11, 2021 at 12:18 pm PDT

The head of logistics for Canada's vaccine rollout is urging people to do their part to lead the country out of the COVID-19 pandemic. Brigadier-General Krista Brodie says it's been her life's work to deliver essential supplies to the people who need them. Marisol Benitez

It looks like the odds are in our favour for a two-dose summer in Canada.

Deputy Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Howard Njoo is hopeful most Canadians will be fully vaccinated before the end of summer, mainly thanks to our vaccine supply and the uptake we’re seeing with more shots getting into arms.

Njoo says, however, the official goalposts have not changed.

“Instead of saying, ‘OK all Canadians might be fully vaccinated by the end of September,’ hey if everything goes well I am optimistic that it might be sooner,” he said Friday.

“Like I say, the goal is still officially to offer Canadians a full vaccination by the end of September.”

The Deputy Chief Public Health Officer and others warn this still depends on a number of factors, and Dr. Njoo notes we can’t get complacent with public health measures given the variants that are still spreading in our community.

Dr. Njoo also cautions that many other countries have seen their vaccination rates plateau at a level lower than what they were hoping for and says efforts are underway to make sure Canada does not face a similar problem.

“Collectively looking at how we can address issues of accessibility but also vaccine hesitancy,” he added.

“I would say that we can’t necessarily rely on the good trend up to now and expect that it will continue just because we have done so well so far.”

The head of the country’s vaccine rollout says the distribution tempo continues to increase.

Brigadier-General Krista Brodie says this week, they’ll be completing the delivery of vaccines to the territories.

“To do that now with COVID-19 vaccines for Canadians is really a testament to the collective effort that has brought us all to this moment.”

Canada’s chief public health officer says over 27.7-million doses of vaccine have been administered across Canada to date.

Dr. Theresa Tam says over 2.6-million of those were given in the past week.

“As of June 4, 70 per cent of the eligible population of aged 12 years or older have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine and 9 per cent have received two doses,” Dr. Tam said Friday.

Dr. Tam says Indigenous communities and the territories have some of the highest vaccination rates in the country. She says in the territories, 60 per cent of residents 12 years of age and up are now fully vaccinated.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made headlines when he self-proclaimed the “two-dose summer, will set up a two-dose fall” here in Canada.

Last month, Trudeau said while progress is being made nationwide with more Canadians receiving vaccines, public health measures won’t be eased until COVID-19 case counts are down and at least 75 per cent of the country has one shot.

Once that happens, the Prime Minister said it is then “we’ll be able to talk about going back to school, back to work, and back to more normality.”