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by Olga MR [76 Views] 2021-06-14 00:25:30

Canadians seeking COVID-19 vaccines in US should be essential travellers: congressman

Canadians who want a COVID-19 vaccine in the United States should be allowed to cross the border as essential travellers in order to get the shot, says a U.S. congressman.


“I think that we should open up the U.S. border to Canadians who want vaccines and can’t get them in Canada,” said New York Democrat Brian Higgins in an interview with The West Block‘s Mercedes Stephenson on Sunday.

“We have surplus vaccines here in the United States, here in western New York that are not being used. And if they’re not being used, they get discarded as medical waste. Why shouldn’t a Canadian come over to our community and get vaccinated?”

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The idea, he said, was that Canadians could drive across, receive their vaccine without leaving their vehicle, and drive right back across the bridge, or meet at a site in the border tunnel between the two cities where an American nurse could give them the shot across the border boundary.

But the Public Health Agency of Canada has rejected such offers, according to a letter obtained by Global News that said having a nurse reach across the border to give the shot would constitute “importation of product,” which isn’t allowed.

“With respect to the set up of the proposed clinic, please be aware that vaccine cannot be imported into Canadian space without the express consent of Health Canada. It is our understanding that actual vaccination, in other words, administration of the vaccine into a patient’s arm, will occur on the U.S. side of the border,” stated the letter.

“However, if the U.S. nurse or pharmacist reaches across the border to administer it to a person in Canada, that is considered importation of product and requires an expression of no objection from Health Canada.”


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