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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

COVID-19 Business Update: September 22nd, 2020

The Government of Canada has signed agreements with Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) to secure up to 72 million doses of their COVID-19 adjuvanted recombinant protein-based vaccine candidate
Information on government grants, resources, and programs, and how to apply for them, is available here.
The Government of Canada has a support page with summaries of current programs and application portals.

Vital updates:

  • The Government of Canada has signed agreements with Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) to secure up to 72 million doses of their COVID-19 adjuvanted recombinant protein-based vaccine candidate. Based on recommendations from the COVID-19 Vaccine Task Force, the Government of Canada is signing agreements with a number of leading pharmaceutical companies to establish a guaranteed supply base of potential vaccine candidates. Agreements have previously been signed with Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson and Novavax, and negotiations continue for access to other leading vaccine candidates. Currently, no vaccines have been approved to prevent COVID-19 in Canada. The Government of Canada has signed an agreement with Gilead Sciences and McKesson Canada to secure a supply of up to 150,000 vials of remdesivir, with deliveries beginning this month and continuing into early 2021. Currently, remdesivir is the only known anti-viral drug that has been shown to be effective in treating COVID-19 patients.
  • The Ontario government is implementing the largest flu immunization campaign in Ontario’s history, as part of the province’s plan to prepare the health system for a second wave of COVID-19. The Province is ordering 5.1 million flu vaccine doses in partnership with the federal government and other provinces and territories, 700,000 more than the approximated usage last year, at a cost of approximately $70 million. The government is also investing an additional $26.5 million to purchase additional flu vaccine doses if required. Businesses and non-profits should consider actively encouraging all staff and volunteers to get the flu shot in order to reduce absenteeism caused by illness. It takes about two weeks for the flu shot to reach full effect, so it is important to get the shot as soon as it becomes available. Flu season can start as early as November. For more information, visit
  • Ontario will begin offering COVID-19 tests at dozens of drug stores within days, Premier Ford has announced. The government hopes that 60 pharmacies will be offering the test by the end of this week. As cases rise, Dr. Barbara Yaffe, Ontario’s associate chief medical officer, has stated that the government is not considering moving back to Stage 2, but is considering “other measures” beside the tighter restrictions on gatherings announced over the weekend.

Reading recommendations:

If you are showing symptoms, contact your health care provider, call the Public Health Info-Line at 905-688-8248, or chat to Public Health online. For testing, call 905-378-4647 ext. 42819 (4-CV19) for information on test centres in Niagara and to book an appointment.

Remember that a COVID-19 test is only a snapshot of your health on the specific date and time the swab was taken. No testing is perfect and a negative result doesn’t mean you haven’t been exposed to COVID-19. You can still develop symptoms days after your test was taken.

It is important that everyone practice physical distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Maintain a 2-metre distance from other people. When maintaining distance is impossible, wear a mask or face covering. Wash hands frequently and thoroughly. Avoid touching the face. If you have recently traveled outside the country, you are legally required to self-isolate for 14 days.

Previous updates can be accessed here.

Stay safe and be vigilant. The GNCC is here to support you. Contact us with any questions you have.

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