First COVID-19 vaccines coming early 2021 in Ontario but supply will be 'very limited'
TORONTO -- Ontario Premier Doug Ford has announced the first COVID-19 vaccines will be available in the province in early 2021 but supply will be "very limited."
Ford made the comments on Thursday while announcing he will provide details on Friday about Ontario's vaccination task force.
He said that while the vaccines are how "Ontario will get life back to normal," there are still many questions that need to be answered.
"We need to know, in no uncertain terms, what vaccines Ontario will receive, how many of them we will get and when exactly they will arrive."
"These are three fundamental questions I've been asking for several weeks now and they remain unanswered."
He said it is up to the federal government to provide those answers to him.
Ford said the process of vaccinating Ontarians will be a "logistical nightmare" but his government will ensure they are ready for when the vaccines are ready.
Health Minister Christine Elliott said on Thursday that a bioethicist will join Ontario's COVID-19 task force to help determine who will first have access to the vaccine when supplies are limited.
She said that Ontario will make the first vaccines available to frontline health-care workers and people in long-term care homes.
The government will then be open to suggestions from the bioethicist about who receives the vaccine next.
Last week, the province announced that retired Gen. Rick Hillier will lead Ontario’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution task force.
The federal government announced on Thursday that Canada will recieve three million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in early 2021 but did not specify how many each province would recieve.
"I can't stress enough how complicated this task will be," Ford said. "When we look at a province the size of Ontario and with so many fundamental questions outstanding the job becomes increasingly."
"That's why we putting our best and brightest on the task force."