The Government of Canada is continually monitoring advances in science, research and knowledge that can strengthen our pandemic readiness capacity. The GOC has concluded there is now sufficient scientific evidence to include an H5N1 vaccine stockpile as an additional element of Canada's multifaceted pandemic preparedness efforts.
The decision brings GOC policy into line with that of other countries such as the USA, UK, Australia, Italy, Switzerland, France and Japan, all of which include an H5N1 vaccine stockpile as part of their pandemic preparedness efforts. The World Health Organization is also creating a global H5N1 vaccine stockpile to support the pandemic readiness efforts of developing countries.
Accordingly, an initial vendor-held H5N1 vaccine stockpile has been established as part of the Government of Canada's pandemic preparedness planning. Decisions on access to and distribution of the product, as well as on the overall size of the stockpile, are being assessed on an ongoing basis.