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Trudeau commends Canada's improved vaccination rate as questions swirl over shipment of Moderna doses

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference in Ottawa on Tuesday, May 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

The Prime Minister is applauding Canadians for rolling up their sleeves as our vaccination rates soar but there are still questions about whether Moderna will hit its delivery target as that drugmaker looks to have its shot approved for children.

At the regular COVID-19 briefing, Justin Trudeau praised the push from Canadians to get inoculated, saying more than half our total population has received at least one dose.

“We now rank number three in the G-20 in doses administered per capita,” said the Prime Minister on Tuesday.

“It’s clear that working together as one big Team Canada is paying off.”

But there are still many vaccine delivery questions when it comes to Moderna.

The Prime Minister can’t say how many doses we are going to receive next month, only revealing it will be millions as Canada still waits for a confirmed delivery schedule from the company.

Moderna owes us the country at least 6.7-million doses before the end of June. This comes as the mRNA drugmaker says trials have commenced for using its shot in children as young as 12.

The company maintains its data shows when the vaccine is used in kids 12-17 years of age, there is 93 percent efficacy with one shot and 100 percent after the second dose.

Two weeks after two doses of the Moderna vaccine, 3,700 tweens and teens in clinical trials developed no cases of COVID-19.

Moderna acknowledges the numbers could change and data still needs to be peer-reviewed but it will be making applications in Canada and the U.S. to expand eligibility.

Meanwhile, Canada’s chief medical officer of health says prior to the long weekend, we were seeing a strong and steady decline in the number of new COVID-19 cases.

Dr. Theresa Tam says the data following the Victoria Day weekend will tell us whether the trend will continue. She says the latest seven-day average of fewer than 5,000 cases daily is 40 percent less than the peak in mid-April.

“With four-and-a-half million COVID-19 vaccine doses delivered before the long weekend, and Canadians continuing to roll up their sleeves as vaccination clinics expand across the country, our fastest moving trend is – happily – our vaccination coverage,” said Tam on Tuesday.

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