A Fraser Health healthcare workers are seen at a drive through COVID-19 testing facility in Burnaby, B.C., Monday, April 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

COVID-19: Trudeau says 30K ventilators on the way; 3.6M Canadians claim benefits

Canada has seen more than 17,000 cases and at least 345 deaths due to COVID-19

The country is ordering up to 30,000 ventilators from several Canadian companies, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said during a press conference in Ottawa Tuesday (April 7).

Those ventilators come after the country asked domestic companies to switch over to manufacturing medical supplies, with a promise that the government will purchase them. Trudeau said nearly 5,000 companies have reached out to help with making medical gowns, masks and gloves.

The prime minister said the new ventilators will be ready “in the coming weeks” but nobody was more specific about when.

In late March, it was estimated that Canada had around 5,000 ventilators already across the country.

At a later press conference, Public Services and Procurement Minister Anita Anand said 16 million of the surgical masks the federal government ordered have already been delivered, and that 2.3 million of the N95 masks ordered will be in Canada by the end of the week.

Canada’s chief medical officer Dr. Theresa Tam said 6000 ventilators have already been purchased in recent days.

Federal officials also said more than 230 million surgical masks and 75 million N95 respirator masks have been ordered but cautioned the global supply chain is so fragile they cannot guarantee how many of those will actually arrive, although an 11th-hour agreement between 3M and the White House has secured a 500,000 shipment of N95 masks. The shipment is delayed until Wednesday after President Donald Trump ordered the company to stop exporting critical equipment needed in the U.S.

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland said the agreement represented the usually “reciprocal and balanced relationship” between the two countries.

Trudeau said eight million surgical masks arrived from China Monday, as the country seeks to keep its supply up amid the pandemic. As of Tuesday morning, 17,063 people had tested positive for COVID-19 in Canada, and the virus had led to 345 deaths. Tam said more than 346,000 people had been tested and about five per cent turned out positive for the novel coronavirus.

Unemployment, emergency benefit claims skyrocket

President of the Treasury Board and MP Jean-Yves Duclos said 966,000 people had applied for the Canada Emergency Response benefit on Monday, on the day it rolled out – as many as would usually apply for EI in six months.

The $2,000 per month payment is for workers who have lost their jobs and income due to the pandemic.

Duclos said 3.6 million people had applied for benefits overall since March 16 and that three million of those had been processed. Emergency benefits are expected to be in some Canadians’ bank accounts by the end of this week.

READ MORE: As Canadians return home amid pandemic, border crossings dip to just 5% of usual traffic

READ MORE: N95 masks on the way for Canada after 3M reaches deal with White House

READ MORE: Recovery rate tops 60% but B.C. records death of man in his 40s due to COVID-19


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

CanadaCoronavirusJustin Trudeau

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

MRI arrives at Maple Ridge hospital this week

A $5-million diagnostic machine has been bolted into place at Ridge Meadows Hospital

LETTER: Telosky park being treated like a garbage can

Maple Ridge resident upset by the amount of littering found in revamped facilities

VIDEO: Pitt Meadows seniors enjoy outdoor dance party for Seniors Week

Outdoor party held in the parking lot of the Pitt Meadows Seniors Activity Centre

VIDEO: Pitt Meadows dentist gets grand welcome home after two-month COVID-19 battle

Michael Chow was given a surprise send off by hospital staff and ‘welcome home’ from neighbours

Maple Ridge to recognize 2020 grads with light display at Memorial Peace Park and community cheer

Community cheer scheduled for June 20 and light display available all month

March dental conference key to many of B.C.’s COVID-19 cases

Early infections from China, Iran were quickly contained

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

Thanks for helping The News to continue its mission to provide trusted local news

MAP: Dr. Henry reveals which B.C. regions have seen most COVID-19 cases

B.C. health officials release a first look at how the novel coronavirus has reached all corners of the province

Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation woman, 26, fatally shot by police in Edmundston, N.B.

Police were conducting a well-being check at the time of the incident

Stray dog with duct tape around muzzle spotted in Abbotsford

Pooch has been spotted over two days, but has escaped capture so far

Seniors to receive up to $500 in promised COVID-19 emergency aid in early July

The Liberal government first promised the extra help in mid-May, but had to create a new system to deliver the aid

VIDEO: Revelstoke bear wanders into Animal House pet store

Staff got ready to chase it out with a broom

No need to get out of your car at food truck festival in Abbotsford and Langley

Annual event takes drive-thru approach during COVID-19 pandemic

New study is first full list of species that only exist in Canada

Almost 40 per cent of them are critically imperilled or imperilled and eight are already extinct

Most Read