By Justin Seward
It’s hard to argue the vaccine rollout in Canada has been anything but smooth since they first started shipping out to countries.
While Canada had fallen behind the likes of the United States, Israel or the United Kingdom, at least it’s looking like things are starting to change for the better.
According to cbc.ca, Canada is eighth in percentage of the population that has received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose at 17.2 per cent, as of April 8.
Israel leads at 61.3 per cent — while the U.K has 46.9 per cent, Chile has 37.4 per cent and the U.S. sits at 35.5 per cent.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, Japan is at 0.8 per cent, South Korea is 2.2 per cent, Indonesia is at 3.4 per cent and Australia sits at 3.6 per cent.
Another problem comes down to the fact vaccines are patented — which prevents other companies from manufacturing them, which in turn — limits supply across the world.
With over 7.6 billion people on Earth, and only a handful of companies producing a vaccine, supply is understandably short across the globe.
And in Canada, with the pandemic already staggering past the 12-month mark, frustration is understandably reaching a boiling point.
No one wants to continue to wear masks, not be able to see their friends or family or be unable to do things they want to do.
Vaccines will obviously help with this, but it’s going to take herd immunity by mass vaccination across a large number of countries before the pandemic is deemed over.
Many have brought forward concerns around vaccine passports, but Canada has not commented it will be necessary, as of yet, to travel out of the country.
While those who want the vaccine should definitely go out and get it, those who don’t shouldn’t be persecuted or restricted to travel because of it.
Will getting the vaccine help slow down the pandemic? Yes, of course, but it’s also not right to force everyone to get vaccinated if they don’t want to.
Much like other issues, we believe other people, including the government, shouldn’t be able to tell you what to do with your body.
Right now, it’s not ideal for anyone — but the federal government is still stating by September anyone who wants a vaccine, will get one.
Alberta.ca states Phase 3, which is the anticipated start of the rollout of vaccine to the general public, will begin May to June.
In Alberta, we’re in Phase 2C —which brings eligibility to physicians, nurses, pharmacists, dentists and all other health care professionals and their office/support staff (who provide in-person, direct patient care), individuals working inpatient care facilities or providing services directly to clients in the community for Alberta Health Services, Covenant Health, Alberta Precision Labs, DynaLife, students undertaking placement practicums in clinical areas and health care workers on First Nation reserves/Metis settlements.
The reality is, the pandemic will continue on until numbers go way down and right now, vaccines look to be one of the best options out of this frustrating loop we’ve been stuck in for over 12 months.
And we at the Taber Times are right there with everyone else in terms of being fatigued by the pandemic.
But at this point in time, AHS is still recommending to regularly wash your hands, wear a mask, keep a distance of two metres and to stay home when feeling unwell.
Stay safe and healthy!
This editorial originated in the