Ontario Premier Doug Ford responded to reports that the U.S. will be sending COVID-19 vaccine doses to Canada.
"God bless America, they’re coming to our rescue," Ford said at a press conference on Thursday. "Thank God, I’ve been bugging [Donald] Trump, I’m been bugging [Joe] Biden, all of them, they must get sick of Doug Ford asking for help."
It has been reported that the U.S. will send 4 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine to Canada and Mexico, with Canada expected to receive 1.5 million.
"We're lending a portion of our releasable doses of AstraZeneca vaccine," a U.S. official told Reuters. "We only put the virus behind us if we're helping our global partners."
Ford maintains that the province is ready to administer 4.8 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines per month but in March, the province only received enough supply to administer 1.6 million doses.
The premier previously expressed frustration with the changing guidelines from the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) guidance on the administration of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, particularly on the impact on the vaccine distribution logistics in Ontario. The committee has determined the vaccine can be used for individuals over the age of 65, after previously expressing concerns around its efficacy in older age groups.
On Thursday, Ford said this change will provide "more flexibility" for the vaccine rollout and he wants to see the expansion of administering the AstraZeneca vaccine to the larger age group as soon as possible.