Ottawa – Covid-19 case numbers are increasing with the current seventh wave, and it is impacting communities across the country. Indigenous Services Canada remains available to assist in prevention and response efforts. The Government of Canada is monitoring COVID-19 throughout the country, including the newest variants of concern, B.4 and B.5.
Vaccination remains the most efficient form of protection against COVID-19. First Nations, Inuit and Métis across the country have access to vaccines through vaccine clinics, which are well underway in Indigenous communities. The more people who are up to date on their vaccines, the better protected we all are. Another way to reduce the spread of COVID-19 is by choosing to follow public health measures, including wearing a mask, staying home when sick and testing for COVID-19 if you have any symptoms.
Vaccine supply: In July, the Government of Canada marked a milestone in delivering more than 100 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to federal, provincial and territorial partners.
Vaccines for children: On July 14, 2022, Health Canada authorized the Moderna SPIKEVAX mRNA COVID-19 vaccine for children 6 months to 5 years of age.
Supports currently available to First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities and organizations
Across the country, ISC is available to assist First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities and organizations should they require immediate assistance with an outbreak or require supports such as temporary infrastructure, rapid testing or PPE.
On April 7, Budget 2022 committed an additional $190.5 million to the Indigenous Community Support Fund (ICSF). On August 2, the Government of Canada transferred $50 million to the ICSF from COVID-19 public health funding, bringing the total ICSF funding this year to $240.5 million.
The ICSF helps Indigenous communities and organizations prevent, prepare for and respond to COVID-19. Funds can be used for measures including but not limited to:
- preparedness measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19
- mental health assistance and emergency response services
- support for Elders and vulnerable community members
- measures to address food insecurity, such as support for the purchase, transportation and distribution of food and access to traditional foods through hunting and fishing in the event of outbreaks
- educational and other supports for children.
Funds are currently being distributed in direct allocations, as well as through the needs-based request process, which remains open.
An additional $218 million is also available in 2022−23 to continue providing high-quality health care in remote and isolated on-reserve First Nations communities. This funding, accessible by request, supports First Nations community-led responses to the pandemic, with priority support targeted to vaccine and booster rollout, testing, surge capacity, as well as health and human resources for urgent medical needs and outbreaks.
Monthly review – July 2022
In July 2022, the following data was reported from First Nations communities:
- 885 average daily reported active COVID-19 cases
- A 50% increase from June 2022
- 8 newly reported hospitalizations
- A 69% decrease from June 2022
- 2 newly reported deaths
- A 33% decrease from June 2022
The following web pages and resources are updated regularly with COVID-19 information on: