As the weather begins to cool and Canadians look south to sunny spots, Health Minister Patty Hajdu has a reminder: Non-essential travel is still not advised.
Hajdu said potential travelers should keep this in mind as they consider visiting relatives or taking a beach vacation amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Hajdu said during an interview, “I will remind Canadians that, as annoying as it is… west block Host Mercedes Stephenson.
There are “some reasons” why the travel advisory is still in place, Hajdu said, including the fact that there are “many places in the world” where “COVID is still very, very out of control” – including some US states. .
Hajdu also pointed out that travel rules could change “very quickly” in different jurisdictions.
“We have seen many stories of Canadians in the past 18 months or so, when they have arrived in another country, that the rules have changed and now they have barriers or challenges to find their way back to Canada. They have just arrived,” she said.
His comments come on the heels of news that the fourth wave in Canada is beginning to show signs of slowing, according to the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC).
While progress across the country has been uneven, new modeling presented by PHAC on Friday suggests the number of new daily cases could decline in the coming weeks if current transmission levels are maintained.
Overall, the numbers give “reason for optimism”, said Dr Theresa Tam, Canada’s chief public health officer.
“With the vaccine coverage we have achieved so far in Canada, we are better protected during the respiratory infection season,” Tam said.
“By taking basic and less restrictive measures such as masking and limiting close contact, we can reduce the impact of COVID-19 this winter.”
Meanwhile, the government is preparing for a time when the spread of COVID-19 has slowed enough to allow Canadians to take recreational travel once again.
Hajdu said the government is working with other countries to make sure that when Canadians travel, their vaccines are accepted — even in cases when a person has had two different vaccines. Have received different types of COVID-19 vaccine.
“This is something that I think all countries are working on – what vaccines will they accept as proof of vaccination upon entry into the country – and we will continue to work with our US counterparts to get all the vaccines they need. Let the data be shared. Proceed on this issue,” she said.
Americans have yet to decide whether they will consider Canadians who were fully vaccinated with two different COVID-19 vaccine doses.
Hajdu would not say whether the US administration is open to recognizing the COVID-19 vaccine dose mix, but said Canadian officials “will continue, obviously, to pressure Americans to recognize it”.
“I suspect this will continue to be a work in progress for countries, including Canada, the United States, about how we make sure we have the confidence in vaccines that we have the ability to fully review from scientific data. No Aadhaar,” she said.
“That’s what we’ll continue to do here in Canada, and I’m sure our international partners will do the same.”
— With files from Granthshala News ‘Leslie Young’
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