The Canadian authorities is taking a look at choices to toughen border controls and an announcement is coming quickly, Deputy Chief Public Well being Officer Dr. Howard Njoo mentioned right this moment.
His feedback come as opposition leaders press the federal authorities to droop flights from sure international locations as a large surge of COVID-19 instances ravages India.
Njoo mentioned officers are reviewing the outcomes of COVID exams on the borders and gathering information from the provinces and territories.
“Our minister of well being, different cupboard ministers and the prime minister are very seized with it. They’re having energetic conversations in regards to the information and so forth,” he advised a information convention right this moment.
“I feel there shall be a call or one thing coming ahead shortly.”
Njoo pointed to current measures to stop the unfold in Canada, together with pre-boarding exams for COVID-19, exams on arrival and the government-mandated 14-day quarantine interval.
Conservative Chief Erin O’Toole is asking for a short lived suspension of sure flights.
“We have to transfer rapidly to cease the brand new variants from getting into Canada and spreading additional. We should safe our borders,” he advised a information convention right this moment. He was referring partially to the B1617 variant, first sequenced in India, and the P1 variant, first detected in Brazil.
“It’s gone time for Justin Trudeau to take motion. The federal authorities should quickly droop flights from hotspot international locations instantly.”
O’Toole mentioned the restrictions ought to come as a short lived maintain, including that the federal government wants to obtain extra vaccine doses.
India, the world’s second-most populous nation, reported a surge of greater than 314,000 new infections right this moment, including strain to a well being care system critically in need of hospital beds and oxygen.
On Wednesday, the federal authorities mentioned it is trying into extra controls.
“I can affirm for you that we’re very actively contemplating all and any further measures which might be or shall be crucial to guard Canadians and I hope that we will share extra of that with you within the subsequent 24 hours or so,” Public Security Minister Invoice Blair advised CTV’s Energy Play.
On Wednesday, the B.C. Centre for Illness Management confirmed that they had discovered 39 instances of the COVID-19 variant B1617 as of April 4.
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The federal authorities says 35 flights from India with not less than one case of COVID-19 aboard have arrived in Canada within the final two weeks.
Canada beforehand banned U.Okay. flights
Calls to limit flights had been echoed right this moment by Bloc Québécois Chief Yves-François Blanchet. He was being questioned about right this moment’s entrance web page within the Journal de Montréal, which shows a photograph of Trudeau wearing conventional Indian clothes with the headline, “India’s variant has arrived. So, Justin, are we slicing ties with India rapidly this time?”
“We should shield the lives and well being of Canadians and Quebecers and it would imply that wherever on earth there’s such an explosion of the variety of instances being probably carried in different jurisdictions and international locations, there have to be measures,” mentioned Blanchet.
“That is one kind of virus attacking one kind of human beings.”
In late December, the federal government banned flights arriving from the U.Okay. in a bid to maintain out a contagious variant of COVID 19 that first emerged there.
However B.1.1.7 nonetheless reached Canadian shores and the Public Well being Company of Canada was reporting 70,253 instances of that COVID-19 variant as of Wednesday,