Throughout the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic response, the Government of Canada has been providing significant support to each province and territory.
Today, the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, the Honourable Bill Blair; the Minister of National Defence, the Honourable Harjit Sajjan; the Minister of Health, the Honourable Patty Hajdu; and President of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada and Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc confirmed that the Government of Canada will be providing more help to Ontario in response to the province’s request for assistance to support the ongoing fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
In response to this request, the federal government is prepared to deploy federal health human resources, provide support from the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), and fund the redeployment of the Canadian Red Cross (CRC) to augment or relieve staff within medical care facilities. In addition, the CAF will be providing airlift of medical personnel from Newfoundland and Labrador and possibly other jurisdictions.
The CAF is preparing to deploy up to three multi-purpose medical assistance teams (MMATs), which are scalable healthcare provider teams primarily composed of Nursing Officers and Medical Technicians as well as additional CAF members for general duty support as applicable. The MMATs will be rotated in and out of the province rather than deployed simultaneously to ensure that CAF support is sustainable. Work is currently underway to complete on the ground assessments, which will determine the exact number of CAF personnel who will be dedicated to this request.
Tomorrow morning, Royal Canadian Air Force personnel will be flying medical personnel from Newfoundland and Labrador to Toronto to help in Ontario medical facilities.
The Government Operations Centre has staff working to coordinate the federal response to the situation in Ontario. Canadians can be assured that all orders of government are working together to deliver the required help.
The federal government has supported Ontario with safe isolation sites for temporary foreign workers, CAF and the CRC for long term care facilities, two mobile health units, and Canadian Rangers in a number of small communities.