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The federal government is investing millions to boost online access to health services and to support a Vancouver biological company’s research into treatment and prevention of COVID-19.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the new funding during his daily news conference in Ottawa this morning as provinces across the country prepare to start re-opening on Monday.

The government is spending $240 million to boost access to online health services, including mental-health support and virtual access to doctors for primary care.

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Ottawa is also providing $175 million to AbCellera Biologics Inc., which Trudeau says has shown promising signs of progress in identifying antibodies that could be used create a vaccine or treatment for COVID-19.

Trudeau also says Canada will work with its allies to get answers around the spread of the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19 following unsubstantiated reports the virus leaked from a Chinese lab.

But the prime minister insists the immediate focus is on helping Canadians through the pandemic.

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