Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland championed Canada’s COVID-19 response, despite boasting a higher death rate than other industrialized nations.
“Our experience during COVID, which was a tragedy where every single COVID death was a tragedy, of course, we could learn lessons about how to do better,” she told reporters. “But broadly, Canada did pretty well. We did well because we had a real Team Canada approach.”
Canada’s pandemic death rate of 135.2 cases per 100,000 population superseded New Zealand (53), Japan (58), Taiwan (74), Australia (77), and Norway (96), according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University of Medicine’s Coronavirus Resource Centre.
On February 8, the Commons gave a second reading to Liberal-sponsored Bill C-293, An Act Respecting Pandemic Prevention. MP Nathaniel Erskine-Smith promised to have cabinet “establish an advisory committee” to review the federal pandemic management.
Blacklock’s Reporter learned the Commons health committee stalled the proposal on April 20 after MPs rejected the internal review as a poor substitute for a public inquiry.
“It’s not independent; it is not transparent,” said New Democrat MP Don Davies.
Since the onset of the COVID pandemic, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau declared Canada is a world leader in emergency management. “Canada is among the best-prepared countries in the world,” he told reporters on March 11, 2020.
Despite the claims, frequent disclosures revealed that federal agencies failed to maintain sufficient medical supplies, including masks.
On March 30, 2020, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) warned in an internal staff email that “we won’t have enough to go around,” reported Blacklock’s Reporter.
“There is a massive shortage of personal protective equipment,” it reads. “Doctors and hospitals are saying they don’t have it themselves. We are going to have to make choices.”
A 2021 internal audit cited “confusion” within the Public Health Agency of Canada since the onset of the pandemic. The Agency lacked “the needed breadth and expertise to lead,” claimed the audit Lessons Learned From The Public Health Agency Of Canada’s Covid-19 Response.
Numerous audits have since faulted the Agency for having “limited public health expertise,” having gone through four presidents in 28 months. They concluded it lacked a “clear understanding” of compiling critical data.