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How Canada is responding to COVID-19

17 Mar 2020 : 23:44  |  Terry NPL  |  Misc  |   0
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How Canada is responding to COVID-19
How Canada is responding to COVID-19
For detailed information on Canada’s whole-of-government actions to respond to the outbreak, refer to the Government of Canada's response to COVID-19.
Travel advisories
The Government of Canada is continually assessing travel risks for Canadians. An official global travel advisory is in effect: Avoid all non-essential travel outside of Canada until further notice. In addition, a pandemic COVID-19 travel health notice with travel health advice for Canadians has also been issued.
It may be increasingly difficult to travel in and out of some destinations. If you are currently in a destination with travel restrictions and your presence there is not essential, you should consider leaving by commercial means while these are still available.
At Canadian borders
As of March 18, 2020, the Government of Canada will:
ban foreign nationals from all countries except the United States from entering Canada. This measure does not apply to air crews, travellers arriving in Canada in transit to a third country, Canadian permanent residents, diplomats or immediate family members of Canadian citizens.
redirect international passenger flight arrivals to 4 airports:
Calgary International Airport
Vancouver International Airport
Toronto-Pearson International Airport
Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport
This measure will not affect domestic flights or flights from the U. S., sun destinations (such as Mexico and the Caribbean), or St. Pierre-et-Miquelon, which can continue to operate on their regular routes and land at current Canadian destinations. The Government is working closely with the airline industry and airports to avoid unnecessarily disrupting operations and to minimize the inconvenience to travellers.
Canada will also implement measures at airports to:
strengthen health screening
increase presence to conduct further health screening and public outreach
increase signage throughout the arrivals area to encourage travellers to follow the latest public health guidance
prevent all travellers who have COVID-19 symptoms, regardless of their citizenship, from boarding international flights to Canada
airlines will conduct a basic health assessment of all air travellers based on guidance from the Public Health Agency of Canada
Self-isolation
As of March 16, 2020, all travellers entering Canada are being asked to self-isolate for 14 days upon entry with exceptions for workers who are essential to the movement of goods and people. Individuals should avoid contact with other people for 14 days, while monitoring themselves closely for symptoms.
The following questions are now being asked at electronic kiosks and by all border services officers at the primary inspection line at all air, land, ferry and rail ports of entry:
Do you currently have a cough, difficulty breathing, or feel you have a fever?
I acknowledge that I am/we are being asked to self-isolate for 14 days to prevent the potential spread of COVID-19.
Border services officers remain vigilant and are highly trained to identify travellers seeking entry into Canada who may pose a health and safety risk. All travellers (no matter their country of origin) are assessed on arrival to Canada.
These measures complement routine traveller screening procedures already in place to detect and respond to the spread of serious infectious diseases into and within Canada.
When showing signs and symptoms of infection
As part of our regular procedures, when a traveller shows signs of an infectious disease upon arrival in Canada, border services officers, or airport and airline staff contact a quarantine officer.
The quarantine officer then performs a more detailed assessment. If necessary, the quarantine officer will address the potential public health risk, such as:
ordering the traveller to be transported to hospital to undergo a medical examination
reporting to the local public health authority
Support for Canadians abroad
To help Canadians return home or cope with challenges they are facing while travelling, the Government of Canada has created the COVID-19 Emergency Loan Program for Canadians Abroad.
The Program will provide the option of an emergency loan to Canadians in need of immediate financial assistance to return home or to temporarily cover their life-sustaining needs while they work toward their return.
Global Affairs Canada is providing 24/7 consular support to Canadians abroad affected by COVID-19 through the Emergency Watch and Response Centre and through consular staff at its network of missions.
Collaboration
The Federal/Provincial/Territorial Public Health Response Plan for Biological Events has been activated to ensure a coordinated response across Canada.
A special advisory committee has been established to advise the Deputy Ministers of Health on the coordination, public health policy and technical content related to this outbreak. This committee consists of the members of the Pan-Canadian Public Health Network Council and the Council of Chief Medical Officers of Health.
The Public Health Agency of Canada is working closely with partners domestically and around the world, including the World Health Organization (WHO), to respond to this outbreak.
Canada's National Microbiology Laboratory (NML) has developed a real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR) test that can diagnose COVID-19 from clinical specimens. The NML is working collaboratively with Canadian provincial public health laboratories to ensure there is additional testing capacity in multiple jurisdictions.
At this time, the NML also supports the use of other international assays that have been posted publicly.
Further collaborative scientific studies to investigate the virus are underway.
The Government of Canada is working with international regulators to help fast-track clinical trials and applications for vaccines, treatments and diagnostic tests. On March 18th, an international regulators meeting hosted by the International Coalition of Medicines Regulatory Authorities is being held to discuss the regulatory requirements for vaccines targeting COVID-19.
We are also working closely with international regulatory partners, including the European Medicines Agency, the United States Food and Drug Administration, and the Therapeutic Goods Administration, to share information on any signals of global supply disruptions.
For clinical trial sponsors
Companies and researchers with drugs, medical devices, or natural health products that may be effective in treating or diagnosing COVID-19 are encouraged to contact us to facilitate clinical trials.
Clinical trials are studies to find out whether a drug or medical device is safe and effective for people. We can authorize a clinical trial quickly in urgent situations.
Please contact us at:
trials using pharmaceutical drugs: @
trials using biologics or radiopharmaceuticals: @
trials using natural health products: @
investigational testing of medical devices: @
Drug and medical device supply monitoring
The Government of Canada is actively monitoring the novel COVID-19 and its impact on the supply of prescription and over-the-counter drugs, natural health products and medical devices in Canada. We do this through regular contact with:
drug, medical device and natural health products manufacturers and importers
provincial, territorial and international partners
To date, no manufacturer of prescription drugs or medical devices has reported any shortage related to COVID-19. We are aware that there may be supply disruptions related to COVID-19 and are monitoring the situation closely.
Companies that market prescription drugs for human use in Canada must report anticipated or actual drug shortages on Drug Shortages Canada. We have contacted companies to remind them of this requirement. Industry stakeholder associations have also been asked to notify us of any early signals of shortages related to COVID-19. Drug and medical device shortage signals can also be reported by the provinces and territories, healthcare professionals or the public.
We will continue to use all available tools to help manage critical national shortages when they happen, and work with partners so that Canadians have access to the medications they need. Learn more about drug shortages in Canada.

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