A leading Canadian infectious disease specialist says that the US-Canada border should remain closed until the US manages to get the pandemic under control, reports CBC.
“They’re having over 50,000 new cases per day in the country, and on top of that, it doesn’t appear like they are getting this epidemic under control. Reopening the border is going to be a long, long, long way away”
– Dr. Isaac Bogoch, a physician and researcher based at Toronto General Hospital
- Related: Australia Shuts Border Between States For First Time in 100-Years as Coronavirus Cases Surge
New cases of COVID-19 reported this week can be traced back to a man who flew from the US to Halifax, via Toronto, and failed to self-isolate upon entering Nova Scotia.
“This is just a stark reminder that we can’t let our guard down and that … places that have been COVID-free for some time can certainly import this and this can cause an outbreak”
– Dr. Isaac Bogoch
Another specialist, infection control epidemiologist Colin Furness, predicts the border will only open when there is a COVID-19 vaccine, or when enough people have been infected to create herd immunity.
“Canada has to be very, very careful about travelers, and especially with travelers coming from high-burden areas, namely the United States.”
– Colin Furness, infection control epidemiologist
For the past four-weeks, Canada has been reporting less than 500 new cases every day. Compare that to 50,000 daily new cases in the US, and rising.
The two countries mutually agreed to temporarily close the border in March to non-essential travel. Commercial traffic and essential workers were permitted to cross. The current agreement extends until 21st July.
The US has had 3,220,559 confirmed coronavirus cases and 135,828 deaths. Canada has had 106,805 cases and 8,749 deaths.