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Canada COVID-19 live updates: Canada eases travel rules for fully vaccinated citizens, permanent residents

18:12  21 june  2021
18:12  21 june  2021 Source:   montrealgazette.com

COVID-19 live updates: Quebec working on plan to speed up 2nd doses for AstraZeneca, Moderna recipients, Dubé says

  COVID-19 live updates: Quebec working on plan to speed up 2nd doses for AstraZeneca, Moderna recipients, Dubé says Updated throughout the day on Monday, June 14. Questions/comments: ariga@postmedia.com Top updates Quebec working on plan to speed up 2nd doses for AstraZeneca, Moderna recipients, Dubé says Quebec’s border with Ontario reopens Wednesday Some university students without health insurance cards are not happy with Quebec’s second-dose policy Quebec reports 123 new cases as hospitalizations continue to fall Canada to receive 9.5M vaccine doses this week thanks to influx of Moderna shots Entering post-COVID world sparks anxiety for some, but uneasiness is normal reaction: experts Here’s what is allowed now that Montreal is a yellow zone Hours extended at some Montreal

a man standing in front of a store: Travellers walk through Montreal's Trudeau airport on Friday, December 18, 2020. © Provided by The Gazette Travellers walk through Montreal's Trudeau airport on Friday, December 18, 2020.

Updated throughout the day on Monday, June 21. Questions/comments: ariga@postmedia.com

Top updates

  • Legault speaks to reporters after getting 2nd vaccine dose
  • Canada eases travel rules for fully vaccinated citizens, permanent residents
  • Quebec acknowledges it provided misleading information about Clic Santé ‘troubleshooting’ appointments
  • Quebecers 30+ now eligible to advance second vaccine shots
  • COVID Conspiracies podcast: How anti-vaxxers set the stage for pandemic conspiracies
  • A guide to COVID-19 vaccinations in Quebec
  • Sign up for our free nightly coronavirus newsletter
10:30 a.m.

Legault speaks to reporters after getting 2nd vaccine dose at the Olympic Stadium

Premier François Legault received his second vaccine dose at the Olympic Stadium this morning.

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It was administered by former nurse Régine Laurent , a former president of the Fédération interprofessionnelle de la santé du Québec, a health care union.

Speaking to reporters after he got his shot, Legault thanked all the workers taking part in the province’s massive vaccination campaign.

He used the opportunity to urge all Quebecers to get their second dose.

He noted that only about 17 per cent of eligible people in the province are fully vaccinated.

“There’s still a lot of work to do,” Legault said.

He added: “We need the second dose to increase our protection – it’s important for ourselves, it’s also important for vulnerable people around us, it’s important for people who want to travel internationally.”

Increasing the second-dose vaccination rate is key to the province’s reopening plan, Legault said.

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The premier was asked about Quebecers who had COVID-19 and are being told that they only need one vaccine dose. Will they be considered fully vaccinated for international travel purposes?

Legault said Quebec officials think they should be considered fully vaccinated, but the issue is being discussed with the federal government.

10 a.m.

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10 a.m.

More Quebec regions shift to green zone as restrictions ease

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10 a.m.

Canada eases travel rules for fully vaccinated citizens, permanent residents

Canada will begin to ease border measures at midnight on July 5, the federal government announced this morning – but the first phase will only allow entry to fully vaccinated travellers eligible to enter Canada under the current travel restrictions.

On Friday, Ottawa said restrictions on non-essential international travel would remain in place at the Canada-U.S. border until July 21.

“This phase will continue to restrict entry to Canada of foreign nationals, unless they already meet an exemption set out in the border restrictions, maintains pre- and on arrival testing for all travellers, and monitors for variants of concern,” the government said.

“Being fully vaccinated will not automatically exempt a traveller from quarantine, the mandatory hotel stay, or Day 8 testing.”

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Travellers will also be required to “electronically submit COVID-19-related information into ArriveCAN in advance of their arrival, meet the pre- and on-arrival test requirements, be asymptomatic, and have a suitable quarantine plan. Acceptable supporting proof of vaccination, as outlined below, is also required. Final determination regarding exemptions is made by a government representative at the border based on the information presented at the time of entry into Canada, which is why a quarantine plan is still required.”

This is from a document published this morning by the federal government:

Who is eligible for eased border measures:

Fully vaccinated travellers who are eligible to enter Canada:

  • individuals with the right of entry (Canadian citizens, permanent residents and persons registered under the Indian Act).
  • Foreign nationals eligible to enter Canada as outlined in the current travel restrictions (Prohibition of Entry into Canada from the United States; Prohibition of Entry into Canada from any country other than the United States.

Fully vaccinated means:

  • The traveller must have received the full series of a vaccine — or a combination of vaccines — accepted by the Government of Canada at least 14 days prior to entering Canada;
  • Proof of vaccination must be in English or French (or a certified translation);
  • The traveller may have received their vaccine in any country; and currently, those vaccines are manufactured by Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD, and Janssen (Johnson & Johnson); however, the list of accepted vaccines may expand in the future as evidence becomes available.

WHAT WILL CHANGE

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Quarantine and testing:

  • Fully vaccinated travellers currently eligible to enter Canada will not be required to quarantine or complete a day-8 test.
  • They must still have a suitable quarantine plan and be prepared to quarantine, in case it is determined at the border that they do not meet the necessary requirements.
  • At any time after entry to Canada, if a fully vaccinated traveller tests positive or are exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, you must follow all local public health requirements, including quarantine or isolation.

Government-authorized hotel stay:

  • Fully vaccinated air travellers, currently eligible to enter Canada, will not be required to quarantine and stay at a government-authorized hotel while they await their on-arrival test result if they meet all of the required criteria.
  • Since fully vaccinated individuals are not subject to the requirement to quarantine and stay at a government-authorized hotel, non-vaccinated children under 18 or dependent adults travelling with them will also be exempt from the hotel stay.

Declaring vaccination status

  • All travellers (not just fully vaccinated travellers) will now be required to disclose COVID- 19 vaccination information, including whether they received a COVID-19 vaccine, the brand name or any other information that identifies the vaccine that was administered, the dates on which the vaccine was administered, and the doses received.
  • This information will help identify vaccine-escape variants—that is, variants that make vaccines less effective—when on-arrival tests are analyzed. This information will help shape appropriate public health measures across the country.
  • Fully vaccinated travellers who want to be considered for the exemption from quarantine and reduced testing requirements will be required to provide evidence of their vaccination status by uploading supporting English or French documentation (or a certified translation), into the ArriveCAN app or by signing in online at Canada.ca/ArriveCAN before arriving in Canada. More details about the information required and how to enter it into ArriveCAN will be available online by July 5, 2021. Travellers using the ArriveCAN app need to make sure they have the most up-to-date version that will be released on July 5 in the Google Play Store and the App Store for iPhone.
  • Travellers must retain a copy (paper or electronic) of their vaccination documentation and originals of any certified translation for verification at the border and for 14 days following their entry to Canada.
  • Only travellers whose vaccination status meets the criteria of “fully vaccinated” will be exempt from quarantine, mandatory hotel stay and day-8 testing if certain conditions are met.

graphical user interface, text © Provided by The Gazette

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WHAT WILL NOT CHANGE

Entry to Canada

Foreign nationals who are not eligible for entry under the current Orders in Council (Prohibition of Entry into Canada from the United States; Prohibition of Entry into Canada from any country other than the United States) will continue to be denied entry to Canada. Generally, this means, fully vaccinated or not, foreign nationals cannot enter for discretionary (non-essential) travel. Individuals can use the online tool, “Find out if you can travel to Canada” on the government of Canada website to find out if they may be eligible to enter Canada.

Pre- and on-arrival testing

Pre- and on-arrival testing requirements for travellers arriving to Canada by air or land continue to apply for everyone unless otherwise exempted.

Unless exempt, all travellers, five years of age or older, regardless of citizenship, must:

  • Provide proof of a negative COVID-19 molecular test result taken within 72 hours before their scheduled flight or arrival at a land border crossing (if arriving by land the test must be done in the U.S.), or
  • Provide proof a positive COVID-19 test taken between 14 and 90 days before their scheduled flight or arrival at the land border crossing, and
  • Take a COVID-19 molecular test on arrival in Canada either at the airport or land border, following instructions provided to you by a government official upon entry to Canada.

Travellers must retain copies of their test results for the full 14 days after entry to Canada, and be prepared to present them to a government official on demand.

Day 8 testing

Unless fully vaccinated or otherwise exempt, all travellers five years of age or older, regardless of citizenship, must complete a post-arrival test on day 8 of their quarantine, following the instructions received upon entry to Canada.

Quarantine and isolation

All travellers, including fully vaccinated travellers, must provide a suitable quarantine plan.

All unvaccinated or partially vaccinated travellers who receive a positive result from their on-arrival or day-8 test must begin isolation for a 14-day period. Travellers who do not meet the requirements for fully vaccinated are still subject to the 14-day quarantine period, even with the receipt of a negative day-8 test result.

ArriveCAN:

All travellers entering Canada by air and land, unless exempt, must submit their information into ArriveCAN within 72 hours before arrival to Canada, including:

  • Travel and contact information;
  • Quarantine plan.
  • Vaccination information.
  • Reference code for a confirmed three-night reservation at a government-authorized accommodation (for air travellers only, unless fully vaccinated or exempt).
  • COVID-19 symptom self-assessment.

Fully vaccinated travellers who wish to be considered for the exemption from quarantine and reduced testing requirements must meet all criteria, including the electronic submission of their vaccination documentation into ArriveCAN prior to arrival in Canada.

Non-vaccinated travellers must continue to use ArriveCAN or call the 1-833-641-0343 toll-free number to:

  • Confirm they have arrived at a government-authorized hotel or the address they provided for their place of quarantine or isolation within 48 hours of entering Canada; and
  • Complete a daily COVID-19 symptom self-assessment during their 14-day quarantine period.

If you meet the exemption, you may receive notifications from ArriveCAN; however, you are not required to send in reports.

9:50 a.m.

Quebec acknowledges it provided misleading information about Clic Santé ‘troubleshooting’ appointments

I received a clear answer about the “troubleshooting” option in Clic Sante from the Health Department on Sunday that also acknowledges that the information presented to the public was misleading.

“Troubleshooting” became available early last week as many Quebecers experienced problems advancing second vaccine appointments. While these appointments allowed some to get their second jab, others who arrived at clinics were told that the purpose of the appointment was only to correct information in the person’s Clic Santé file. The latter group did not get a vaccine.

Here’s what the department spokesperson told me on Sunday:

“During a troubleshooting appointment, the second dose will be administered if the required vaccine is available and the 56-day period between doses is respected.

“If it is not possible to vaccinate the person during the troubleshooting appointment, the staff of the vaccination center will correct the data on the Clic Santé platform and make a new appointment. This is then a ‘conventional’ appointment and vaccine availability is guaranteed.

“It should be noted that in the majority of cases, the vaccination centers offering the troubleshooting service have the three types of vaccine available, in order to be able to offer vaccination to all those who present themselves.

“It is important to note that due to delays in delivery of the Pfizer vaccine, during the week of June 21, it will not be possible to administer this vaccine during the troubleshooting appointments, from June 19 to 24, inclusive. The people concerned are invited to come to their appointments anyway in order to have the information corrected and to set a new appointment when the doses are available.”

Finally, in an acknowledgement that the information on Clic Santé was misleading, the spokesperson added: “In addition, the information on the Clic Santé site will be modified to inform users of the possibility that they may not be vaccinated at their troubleshooting appointment due to the delay in deliveries of Pfizer vaccine.”

Note that despite what the spokersperson said above, many readers told me that clinic staff did not actually help them book a new appointment. Rather, they were sent home to fend for themselves. And several others told me that some clinic staff had not even heard of “troubleshooting appointments.”

Note that Quebec says it has fixed problems that stopped some people from being able to advance their second doses using the main option on Clic Santé.

That means if you want to advance your second appointment, first try “COVID-19 Vaccine – 2nd dose.” If you get error messages, move on to “COVID-19 Vaccine – Troubleshooting.”

Hopefully, this is the last item about the troubleshooting option.

But before we move on, I wanted to apologize to anybody who had trouble with appointments due to the info I passed on via live updates last week.

9:30 a.m.

Quebecers 30+ now eligible to advance second vaccine shots

Quebecers 30 and older are now eligible to advance their second dose – either by changing the date via the Clic Santé booking site or visiting a walk-in clinic and getting the second shot.

By Wednesday, all Quebec adults will be able to speed up their shot.

 Quebec publishes timeline for advancing second-dose appointments. June 3, 2021. Quebec publishes timeline for advancing second-dose appointments. June 3, 2021.
9:20 a.m.

Canada to unveil travel rules for fully vaccinated citizens, permanent residents

From The Canadian Press:

Canada is set to detail what quarantine rules citizens and permanent residents who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 will soon have to follow when entering the country.

Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Minister Bill Blair said last week that “measures” would be announced today that will apply to immunized Canadians, as well as foreign nationals who are permitted entry.

Currently, those without citizenship or resident status can enter the country only if their travel is related to work, school or other essential business, but not for leisure.

As more Canadians get inoculated against COVID-19 and summer weather has people itching to take some long-awaited trips, pressure is building for the Liberal government to begin relaxing some of its border and quarantine rules.

Over the weekend the country hit an important target of having 75 per cent of its eligible population receive one dose and 20 per cent get two, providing the latter group with full protection against COVID-19.

These were benchmarks Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and top health officials said needed to be met to safely relax pandemic-related health measures.

Those hoping to see some loosening this month were disappointed on Friday when the Liberal government announced its restrictions on non-essential international travel would remain in place at the Canada-U.S. border until July 21.

In the lead-up to Monday’s announcement, the federal government spent the past week teasing at some of the travel changes it considered making for vaccinated Canadians and permanent residents.

Health Minister Patty Hajdu has said that starting in early July, the government looked to exempt fully vaccinated travellers from having to pay for a three-night stay at a government-approved hotel.

The sites are where Canadians entering the country by air, regardless of their vaccination status, must currently begin a 14-day quarantine while awaiting a negative result from a COVID-19 test required upon arrival.

9:20 a.m.

COVID Conspiracies podcast: How anti-vaxxers set the stage for pandemic conspiracies

  COVID-19 live updates: Canada eases travel rules for fully vaccinated citizens, permanent residents

In this six-part podcast, Postmedia journalists from across the country will dive deep into why conspiracy theorists and anti-vaxxers have flourished during the pandemic, how their false claims hurt us, and what we can do about it. Hosted by Monique Beaudin of the Montreal Gazette.

The COVID Conspiracies podcast is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Stitcher, and other podcast sites.

9:15 a.m.

A guide to COVID-19 vaccinations in Quebec

Local health authorities have set up mass vaccination sites across Montreal.

You can book appointments via the Clic Santé website or by phone at 1-877-644-4545.

Here are the nuts and bolts of getting vaccinated , by Katherine Wilton. Her guide includes the age groups targeted, how to book appointments, and addresses of vaccination centres.

Two private sites can also help you book appointments:

  • Vaccélérateur, an automated service that scans last-minute availabilities posted by Quebec’s Clic Santé vaccination site, alerts followers on Twitter as soon as appointments come up.
  • Vaxstat was created to help Quebecers find a nearby available slot.
9:15 a.m.

Here are the current pandemic restrictions in Montreal and Quebec

We are regularly updating our list of what services are open, closed or modified in Montreal and Quebec, including information on the curfew and other lockdown measures.

You can read it here.

9:15 a.m.

Here’s where Montrealers can get tested today

Montrealers can be screened at test centres across the island.

You can check screening clinic wait times here .

8:45 a.m.

The situation across Canada

Here’s the rate of case growth per 100,000 people over the past seven days, via the federal government’s latest epidemiology update .

  COVID-19 live updates: Canada eases travel rules for fully vaccinated citizens, permanent residents
8:30 a.m.

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ariga@postmedia.com

Read my previous live blogs here.

Related

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