Skip to main content

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he will soon be able to give Canadians a better sense of the impact COVID-19 is going to have on this country but he isn’t able to do it yet.

The Canadian Press

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he will work with provincial governments to improve the sharing of data and to start the release of precise projections on the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic across Canada.

“There has been tremendous transparency on the raw data,” Mr. Trudeau said at his daily news conference on Thursday. “The question of the analysis of those numbers is the next question. People want to know what the model is, how long they are likely to be in this situation, when can kids see their friends again, when are we going to be through this phase and get back to work.”

A number of governments around the world have publicly shared their internal projections for the domestic spread of the coronavirus.

In Canada, there has been a wide discrepancy between the data that is provided by provincial authorities on a daily basis – in addition to different levels of transparency on internal projections.

Mr. Trudeau said there is a wide range of predictions available to federal and provincial officials, from best-case to worst-case scenarios, but that he favours the release of more precise information to the Canadian public. He added the quality of the numbers will improve as provinces reduce their testing backlogs.

“We are improving the quality of the data, we are coordinating with the provinces to make sure that the data is consistent right across the country and that is the numbers that we are putting through the various models. As we get those models more accurate, we look forward to sharing them with Canadians,” he said.

The Prime Minister said he would be discussing the matter later in the day with his provincial and territorial counterparts, saying it is important for all Canadians to have a better sense of the spread of the disease and to start having a sense of the duration of the public-health crisis.

In addition, Mr. Trudeau said he will also be discussing the distribution of medical equipment with premiers and territorials leaders. He said Canada has recently received an order of one million medical masks, which are currently getting ready to be distributed out of a warehouse in Hamilton.