Earlier reopening of the province to step 3

The government announced today an earlier reopening of the province to step 3. The news did not come as a surprise given the successful vaccination rollout and decreased hospitalization rates. In several media interviews I expressed that although the five day advanced reopening is not a major concern, the lack of capacity restrictions in indoor activities is.

The world is at risk of 'vaccine apartheid'

This week we consider the shocking status of vaccine inequity from a global perspective. World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said recently that the world is at risk of 'vaccine apartheid'. The WHO chief highlighted that at least 63 million doses of vaccines have been shipped to 124 countries and economies, but they represent just 0.5 per cent of the combined population of those nations. He also noted that the basic problem of vaccine inequity was a lack of sharing by the wealthy countries that have accumulated most of the vaccine supplies.

Canada is virtue signalling while waffling on global access to COVID-19 vaccines

This article addresses the shocking contrast between Canada's declarations of concern with the global distribution of vaccines, and the poor reality of its actions. Joel Lexchin, Professor Emeritus of Health Policy and Management, York University, Emergency Physician at University Health Network, Associate Professor of Family and Community Medicine, University of Toronto tackles this question.

Global herd immunity remains out of reach because of inequitable vaccine distribution – 99% of people in poor countries are unvaccinated

As we reach enormously successful levels of COVID-19 inoculation in Canada and other rich countries, the disparities with the rest of the world become starker. This article considers the enormous cost in lives of leaving most of the global population unvaccinated. It draws lessons on how we can do better from the effort to provide lifesaving drugs for HIV-AIDS in the 1990s. This June 22 article is by Maria De Jesus, Associate Professor and Research Fellow at the Center on Health, Risk, and Society, American University School of International Service.

After a year of pain, here's how the COVID-19 pandemic could play out in 2021 and beyond

Even during the COVID crisis in Ontario, we should not forget that this is a global calamity. The massive third wave in Ontario is driven by COVID variants of concern that appeared in other parts of the world where the virus ran unchecked. In the most literal sense, we are all in this together. Unfortunately, we don’t behave as if that is the case. With the goal of increasing our awareness and actions on COVID-19 global justice, I am posting another article, dated March 10, by Michael Toole, a Professor of International Health at the Burnet Institute in Australia.

Insights from Cuba: Primary care as the focus of COVID-19 prevention

Today our focus is on Cuba, a Caribbean island with about 11 million population and a very different economic and political regime. Canadians know Cuba well through their tourist visits – more than one million in 2019. Today, we are interested in a different facet of Cuban society – the community focus of its health system and their success, so far, in controlling the COVID-19 pandemic. There are important insights for us in Ontario.

Support Zimbabwean nurses arrested and fired for protesting deteriorating pay and working conditions during pandemic

Dr. Denise Gestaldo has brought to our attention the struggle of Zimbabwean nurses. On 6 July, the Zimbabwean government arrested 13 nurses at the Harare hospital. They were protesting their deteriorating pay and working conditions. Those nurses have since been released on bail -- but have been dismissed from their jobs. With the inflation rate hovering around 1000%, the cost of living has risen so rapidly that public sector salaries are now almost worthless.