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Canada now has enough COVID-19 vaccine doses to fully vaccinate all eligible citizens: PM

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OTTAWA —
Canada currently has enough doses of COVID-19 vaccines in the country to fully vaccinate every eligible person over the age of 12, with 66 million doses received as of Tuesday.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau marked the vaccine milestone at a New Brunswick vaccination clinic.

“Back in the winter I made a promise that we would have enough vaccines for all eligible Canadians by the end of September. Not only have we kept that promise, we’ve done it two months ahead of schedule,” Trudeau said.

In June, Trudeau promised that by the end of this month, Canada would have received “over 68 million” doses of COVID-19 vaccines.

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As of Tuesday morning, according to CTV News’ vaccine tracker, 80 per cent of the eligible population has received a first dose, while just over 63 per cent of those eligible are fully vaccinated. After trailing behind for months, Canada now has a larger percentage of its population fully vaccinated than any other G7 country. 

While Canada’s vaccine rollout has been boosted by large deliveries of doses in recent months — making it possible to rapidly administer second doses — the national mass immunization campaign has not been without its issues.

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Since the first COVID-19 vaccines were administered in Canada on December 14, 2020, the rollout has been marked by wildly different challenges including a shortage of doses in some places and seemingly a surplus in others; some Canadians receiving their two shots just four weeks apart, while others waited four months.

The evolving immunization strategy prompted by supply issues and adverse reaction concerns has resulted in some folks receiving mixed-dose regimes. And anyone hoping for a single-shot vaccine had their hopes dashed when the only delivery of Johnson & Johnson doses was rejected due to quality control issues.

Now, the conversation is turning to how long the vaccines will provide protection, and whether evolving variants may prompt booster doses, meaning that while the initial vaccine rollout may be tapering off, COVID-19 and ways to keep future waves at bay will be an ongoing focus for governments and public health officials.

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