Following an urgent plea for all available qualified immunizers to help with the Province’s vaccination efforts in long-term care facilities, the Liberal Opposition is expressing concern about the Government’s vaccination planning efforts.
“The Department of Health, through the Nurses Association of New Brunswick, put out an urgent plea last week calling for help with administering the vaccines in long-term care facilities. Why wasn’t this request made earlier when the shortage of immunizers was first noticed, why wait until the situation becomes urgent?” says Jean-Claude D’Amours, the official Opposition critic for Health. “I have serious concerns about the planning of the vaccine rollout, and I worry that the disorganization within government will result in New Brunswickers having to wait longer to be immunized than other jurisdictions.”
Premier Higgs has stated publicly that with adequate supply every New Brunswicker could be vaccinated within two months. While the Higgs government has criticized the federal government regarding the supply of vaccines, Mr. D’Amours says the province should focus on its own jurisdiction and first ensure it’s well prepared to administer the vaccines received before criticizing the supply.
“If you look at the number of vaccines received last week and compare it to how many vaccines were administered during this time, you can see that the province is not able to vaccinate New Brunswickers at the same rate it receives the doses” says Jean-Claude D’Amours. “Other jurisdictions like Nova Scotia and Quebec are advancing quickly with their vaccination rollout, New Brunswick seems to be falling behind.”
As member of the all-party Covid-19 committee, Liberal Opposition Leader Roger Melanson says the call for additional immunizers came as a surprise. “I have raised the issue of vaccination and the vaccination roll-out at the all-party committee in the past and was assured we would be able to administer as many vaccines as we received. That does not seem to be the case anymore and I will be seeking further clarity on this at the next committee meeting.”