Decisions made by the U.S. are having a huge impact in Canada right now. Ontario Premier Doug Ford has warned that the province could run out of protective equipment for health care staff by the start of next week if the Canada-U.S. medical supplies block continues. That prediction comes after the Premier accused President Donald Trump of halting a huge shipment of three million masks to Canada last week.
Ford said on Friday, April 3 that he and Ontario will never rely on Trump or any other head of state for supplies again after the U.S. stopped manufacturer 3M from sending vital N95 masks north of the border.
And, on Monday, April 6, he told Global News: "We had three million masks stopped at the border this weekend coming up to Canada. That’s unacceptable. Absolutely unacceptable that they’re doing this.
"Hopefully, we’re going to work through it and get an exemption for Canada."
Per CityNews, Ford went on to warn on Monday that Ontario could run out of vital personal protective equipment for its health care workers by early next week after the shipment was allegedly blocked.
As reported by CBC, Ford insisted that "delays in global shipments and recent restrictions at the U.S. border" have left Ontario with a huge uphill struggle.
However, he did acknowledge in his press briefing on Monday afternoon that 500,000 of the three million halted masks will be released that same day.*
Provincial manufacturers are apparently still "weeks away" from being able to deliver their own essential items to health care workers.
On Friday, Ontario shared its model for how far COVID-19 could ultimately reach in the province.
As of Ontario's 10:30 a.m. update on Monday morning, the province has had 4,347 total cases of COVID-19 so far.
Of those, 1,624 have been resolved. There have been 132 deaths and 589 patients are currently hospitalized. Nearly 79,000 total tests have been run, but only 329 are under investigation right now.
Per CityNews, Ford added that he believes Canada should be exempt from the border restrictions imposed by the U.S.
"We are optimistic that the U.S. government will grant Canada an exemption," he said.
And, in his press conference on Monday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau insisted that Canada will continue to stress in its talks with the U.S. that "healthcare supplies and workers across the border are very much a two-way street," reports Global.
*This article has been updated.