Ottawa Spends More Than $1 Billion To Secure COVID-19 Vaccines

Canada has committed more than $1 billion to buy up to 282 million doses of potential COVID-19 vaccines.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said his government is spending money to ensure Canadians have access to millions of doses of some of the most promising vaccines in development. That includes a deal with AstraZeneca for up to 20 million doses of its vaccine candidate, which is now in the third and final phase of clinical trials.

The AstraZeneca agreement is the sixth of its kind that the Canadian government has reached with a drug company working on a vaccine. The doses will only become available if they successfully complete clinical trials and Health Canada approves them.

Trudeau said that Canada's investments and deals have potentially secured enough doses of vaccine to vaccinate each Canadian more than seven times. The federal government hasn't yet said what its strategy will be to prioritize vaccinations.

Not all those vaccines may be approved by Health Canada, but it is very likely Canada will end up with more vaccines than it needs, and the federal government has not indicated what will happen if there is excess supply.