Sep 26, 2022
By Jane Brown
The Trudeau Liberals in Ottawa have made it official, announcing that Canada’s remaining COVID-19 border restrictions will all be lifted as of this Saturday October 1st.
Mandatory vaccines, testing and quarantine for international travellers will end on Friday September 30th, and people travelling by air or rail will no longer need to wear masks or undergo health checks as of Saturday October 1st.
The ArriveCan app will also no longer be mandatory when the current order expires this Friday September 30th.
Various federal cabinet ministers provided the update Monday morning, including Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos, who says we are in a much better position now than we were in 2020.
“That is in large part due to vaccination efforts of Canadians and the observance of public health measures since the outbreak of the pandemic,” explained Duclos.
He says what’s important now is for Canadians to get the new bivalent COVID vaccine, which also targets the Omicron variant as well as the original strain of the virus.
“Moderna’s new bivalent vaccine which specifically targets Omicron is now offered to all Canadian adults everywhere in the country,” said Duclos.
The health minister says 40-percent of Canadians plan to get the bivalent shot this Fall, while another 40-percent are considering getting it.
But when asked if he agrees with U.S. President Joe Biden’s assessment that the pandemic is over, the health minister responded, “The answer is if anyone has doubts as to whether COVID-19 still exists, I would invite that person to visit the hospital anywhere in Canada. We have between 4000 and 5000 people hospitalized everyday with COVID-19 which puts a very heavy burden on our hospital system.”
Duclos says this means about 10 percent of hospital capacity in Canada is being used to look after people with COVID-19.