Premier Ford considering another lockdown as intensive care admissions soar

Natascha Wood
Nation Valley News

NORTH YORK — Premier Doug Ford and outgoing Chair of Ontario’s Vaccine Taskforce General Rick Hillier delivered a press release today from the Humber River Hospital vaccination clinic to speak about the current state of affairs concerning the COVID-19 pandemic. This update comes as Ontario records  2,336 new cases of the virus today, with 421 people in ICUs, marking the biggest single-day jump in intensive care admissions since the beginning of the pandemic.

While Ford had positive things to say about General Hillier’s work and Ontario’s growing ability to administer vaccines, he echoed sentiments from past press releases, wherein he expressed frustration about the lack of vaccine supply. Ford went on to criticize the Federal Government for not procuring enough supply, an obstacle that has hamstrung many Health Units across the province of Ontario in their efforts to combat the surging variants of concern. He also confirmed that the latest shipment of Moderna vaccines is expected to be delayed until next week, resulting in the temporary closure of several mass vaccination sites.

General Hillier took the podium to speak in what was his last press release as Chair of the Vaccine Taskforce, reflecting on his work over the last four months to lead the vaccine rollout. He stated that 2.2 million vaccines have already been administered in the province, 70,000 of which were given just yesterday. The only obstacle remains lack of supply, but Hillier insists the province is ready to go, as soon as more supply arrives.

Ford returned to answer questions about the steady rise in new cases, including the worrying trend of younger age groups being admitted to ICU’s.

“I’m extremely concerned about the situation that we’re seeing. I’m also very concerned about seeing the younger people in the ICU’s. Everything’s on the table right now. So, folks, be prepared. I’m asking you, don’t make plans for easter. I won’t hesitate to lock things down if we have to. I did it before, I’ll do it again. Nothing is more important than our health.” Premier Ford warned. “The economy—yes, it’s important—but without people’s health, we won’t have an economy.”

The Premier concluded the press release by telling the public not to let their guard down and not to plan big gatherings this weekend.

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