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Dr. Tam Says The US Poses "A Risk To Canada" When Asked About The Border

Our neighbour is also still trying to manage outbreaks.
Dr. Tam Says The US Poses "A Risk To Canada" When Asked About The Border

It could still be a while before you can take a trip to the south. The Canada-U.S. border possibly reopening will be looked at carefully because the U.S. poses "a risk" to our country, according to Canada's top doctor. She suggested easing domestic restrictions before international ones.

During a press conference on May 12, Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada's Chief Public Health Officer, spoke about the restrictions on travel across the border. 

"This virus could take off rapidly if we do not be extremely slow and cautious with our approach," she said.

She noted that COVID-19 is in essentially every country and jurisdiction around the world but each place is in a different stage.

"The United States being one country that still has cases and is still trying to manage outbreaks, they present a risk to Canada from that perspective," Dr. Tam said.

That needs to be taken into account when thinking about reopening the border, according to our top doctor.

Anybody who enters Canada must isolate for 14 days and Dr. Tam called that one of the key aspects of public health measures in place to reduce the risk to Canadians.

She suggested that we see what happens when domestic measures are eased before we look at easing international restrictions.

Reopening travel to and from the U.S and the possibility of increased border traffic is something that will have to be watched carefully.

Dr. Tam said that is so it doesn't become an issue that will overwhelm Canada's healthcare system.

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland had said a day earlier that an increase in cross-border traffic is inevitable once both countries come out of lockdowns.

Provinces like Ontario and B.C. have expressed a desire for travel between the two countries to remain restricted.

Justin Trudeau also mentioned the Canada-U.S. border during his own press conference the same day that Dr. Tam spoke about it.

He said that there have been constant discussions between the two countries about the travel restrictions.

The agreement on the Canada-U.S. border closure is set to expire on May 21 if it's not extended once again.

It was initially closed back in March except for essential travel and that agreement was extended for another month in April.

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