Doug Ford defends vaccine rollout as 1st Ontario health-care worker receives 2nd dose

TORONTO — Ontario Premier Doug Ford defended his government’s COVID-19 vaccine program Monday as a health-care worker became the first person in the province to receive both doses of one of the shots.

Anita Quidangen was given her second dose at Toronto’s University Health Network, the first of five health-care workers slated to cross that milestone Monday.

Quidangen said she hopes others will follow in her footsteps as the province continues its rollout of two COVID-19 vaccines.

Read more: Ontario reports nearly 3,300 new coronavirus cases, 29 deaths

Ford, who was present as the health-care workers received their shots, acknowledged there have been “a few bumps in the road” in the province’s immunization campaign but said he is confident in the plan.

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“We’re ramping it up and you’re going to see a significant difference over the next few weeks,” the premier said.

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Critics, including some in the medical field, have said the province is not moving fast enough with inoculations.

A decision to temporarily close immunization clinics over the holidays was met with widespread outrage last week, prompting the retired general heading the vaccine rollout to admit the move was a mistake.

As of 8 p.m. on Sunday night, the province said 42,419 COVID-19 vaccine doses had been administered in Ontario. Of those, 4,808 doses were administered Sunday.

© 2021 The Canadian Press

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