COVID-19 Update: Canada Increase Immunization Efforts

As of May 11, 2021, the total number of people who have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccination in Canada is 16,557,932. This number is approximately 33 percent of the Canadian population. Canada is scheduled to receive two million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in the upcoming week as local provinces increase immunization efforts.

Only those who are recommended to get the vaccine by the federal, provincial and territorial public health bodies can get the COVID-19 vaccine. However, British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec are set to add to the list of eligible individuals for the vaccine, over the next few days.

Canada has been distributing the doses of vaccines in phases since December 2020. If the continued supply of safe and effective vaccines is delivered, then the estimation is that everyone eligible for the vaccine will be immunized. Canada anticipates that this will be accomplished by September 2021.

COVID-19 Vaccination in Canada

Five COVID-19 vaccines are currently approved for use in Canada. They are:

  1. Pfizer-BioNTech
  2. Moderna
  3. AstraZeneca
  4. COVISHIELD Verity/Serum Institute of India (SII) (COVISHIELD)
  5. Janssen

Of these five vaccines, only Janssen has not yet been administered. Below is a table showing the distribution of each vaccine through Canada.

Vaccine Product and Vaccination Status
COVID-19 vaccine At least one dose Partially vaccinated Fully vaccinated
Pfizer-BioNTech 8,417,329 7,645,670 771,659
Moderna 2,417,329 2,077,925 243,532
COVISHIELD 496,276 496,069 207
AstraZeneca 1,549,115 1,545,204 3,911

By recommendation from the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI), the government prioritizes certain key populations. The vaccinations are generally taken by an age-based approach by first focusing on adults aged 80 and older. The territories aim to vaccinate all adults aged 18 and older.

Key Populations That Have Received a COVID-19 Vaccine
Key population At least one dose Partially vaccinated Fully vaccinated
Adults aged 70 to 79 86.90% 81.57% 81.57%
Adults aged 80 and older 89.23% 72.65% 16.58%
Adults aged 18 and older in the territories 72.68% 11.87% 60.81%

Changes of COVID-19 Rules and Restrictions Across Provinces


There have been new rules implemented in several provinces to slow the spread of the coronavirus. This comes as a result of battling the third wave of COVID-19 in Canada.

Nova Scotia

As of May 10, the borders of Nova Scotia have been closed to anyone wanting to come into the province, this includes individuals from Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador. The restriction is also for those who are moving into the provinces or visiting for a funeral. There are, however, limited exceptions for those who want to be with a family member who is at the end of their life.

Those who are allowed to still travel to Nova Scotia are:

  • Permanent residents returning to the province;
  • People who work outside the province;
  • Post-secondary students returning home or entering to study;
  • People travelling for child custody reasons;
  • People who are exempt from self-isolation such as long-haul truck drivers, airline crew, first responders and people needing essential health services; and
  • Individuals who follow the protocol for travel between Nova Scotia and New Brunswick for work, school and child care only.

There has also been a new measure set in place stating that households should designate one member to do the essential shopping, as this will limit the movement within the province.


Effective May 12 until May 30, all kindergarten to Grade 12 schools in Brandon and Winnipeg are moving to remote learning. This is to break the cycle of transmission and to reduce case counts.

Other new restrictions have been implemented from May 9 for a period of three weeks. They are as follows:

  • Outdoor gatherings with multiple households are limited to a maximum of five people;
  • Restaurants, bars and patios are closed but can still provide take-out and delivery services;
  • Gyms, fitness centres, barbers, salons, casinos, museums, galleries, day camps are closed;
  • Religious gatherings are prohibited;
  • Indoor sports and recreation, including after-school activities, are closed;
  • Retail stores, markets and garden centres must operate 10 percent capacity, to a maximum of 100 people; and
  • Malls can be open to a maximum of 10 percent of the facility’s capacity.

How COVID-19 Is Affecting Canadian Immigration


As a result of COVID-19 in Canada, Express Entry applicants will now have a 90-day window to submit their application after receiving their invitation to apply.

Individuals who have already been approved for permanent residency can only land in Canada as a permanent resident if:

  1. their COPR was issued on or before March 18, 2020; or
  2. they are exempt from the travel restrictions.

Along with these requirements you also need to be coming to Canada to settle permanently and show that you’re able to quarantine for 14 days.

For those who haven’t yet applied to immigrate to Canada, the Canadian government is still accepting the majority of permanent resident applications. However, they are mostly focusing on granting work permits for those individuals who fall under the essential services.

Essential services include occupations such as:

  • First responders;
  • Healthcare workers;
  • Energy and utility workers;
  • Transportation;
  • Critical goods and more.

If you have work experience in any occupation considered essential, click the link below to fill out the form and see if you’re eligible to move to Canada.