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Canadian Medical Forum supports the COVID-19 vaccines authorized in Canada

The Canadian Medical Forum brings together leaders of Canada’s major national medical
organizations to discuss issues of priority to physicians, their patients, and the Canadian
healthcare system. As such, we are writing today in support of Canada’s COVID-19
immunization program and to encourage Canadians to get vaccinated.

The COVID-19 pandemic has killed over 20,000 Canadians in less than a year and is
bringing our health care system to the edge of collapse. There is good news on the
horizon as the COVID-19 vaccines are starting to be administered around the country.
We must support vaccination to end this pandemic.


Vaccination is a critical component for control of the virus and the best way to protect
you, your family and friends from COVID-19. As it becomes available, we collectively
endorse vaccination for all eligible individuals including physicians and other health care
workers, patients, and the public at large. We encourage anyone who has concerns to
speak with their physician or health care provider.


Most importantly, vaccination will help save the lives of our most vulnerable Canadians.
But in order to achieve this goal, enough of us need to receive the vaccine, so that
transmission of the virus is suppressed and no longer poses a threat to health or our
health care system. Until then, we must remain vigilant until this level of immunity is
achieved. Even after getting vaccinated, we must continue to follow all existing public
health measures, such as physical distancing, hand washing, and mask wearing, until the
virus can no longer spread and infect others.


We support and have confidence that Health Canada’s rigorous evaluation process will
ensure the safety and effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccines for Canadians. Vaccine
producers leveraged decades of prior research, advances in science and technology, and
unprecedented levels of global collaboration and funding, to rapidly develop the much needed
COVID-19 vaccines. Although adverse reactions can occur in some individuals,
side effects of the vaccine are generally mild to moderate. Canada also has a strong
vaccine safety monitoring system in place that proactively engages healthcare
professionals, vaccine manufacturers, provinces and territories.

For physicians, it is vital to stay informed on trial data and available resources to make informed
decisions and recommendations for patients. Patients trust their health care providers and
leaders, so your voice and example are important. We urge physicians to get vaccinated as soon
as you are able. Be prepared to have conversations with your patients and other health care
workers so you can address any hesitancy or concerns and inspire their confidence. Recognize
the importance of practicing cultural safety, given the disproportionate impact of the pandemic
on marginalized communities and how a myriad of factors have created a legacy of mistrust in
vaccination programs and the healthcare system.


The arrival of COVID-19 vaccines in Canada is a pivotal moment which offers a safe and
effective way to help protect Canadians against COVID-19. We all play a role in reducing the
burden on our health care system and saving lives of our fellow Canadians. Getting vaccinated
is the best hope we have to move forward.


For additional information on COVID-19 vaccines, please consult the Public Health Agency of
Canada website https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/coronavirusdis…-
covid-19/vaccines.html

Sincerely,
Flordeliz Gigi Osler, BScMed, MD, FRCSC
Chair, Canadian Medical Forum


Geneviève Moineau, MD, FRCPC
President and CEO
Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada


David Anderson, MD, FRCPC, FACP
Dean, Dalhousie University
Chair, AFMC Board of Directors


Henry Li
President
Canadian Federation of Medical Students


Catherine Lajoie
Présidente
Fédération médicale étudiante du Québec

Francie Lemire, MD CM, CCFP, FCFP, CAE, ICD.D
Executive Director and CEO
College of Family Physicians of Canada


Catherine Cervin, MD, MAEd,FCFP
President
College of Family Physicians of Canada


Tim Smith
CEO, CMA and CMA Group of Companies


E. Ann Collins, BSc, MD
President, Canadian Medical Association


Fleur-Ange Lefebvre
Executive Director & CEO
Federation of Medical Regulatory Authorities of
Canada

Scott McLeod, MD
President
Federation of Medical Regulatory Authorities
of Canada

Maureen Topps, MB ChB, FCFP, MBA, FRCPC (Hon)
Executive Director & CEO
Medical Council of Canada

Jay Rosenfield, MD, MEd, FRCPC
President
Medical Council of Canada

Robert Conn
Interim Executive Director
Resident Doctors of Canada

Esther Kim, MD
President
Resident Doctors of Canada

Susan Moffat-Bruce, MD, PhD, MBA, FACS, FRCSC
Chief Executive Officer
Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada

M. Ian Bowmer, MDCM, FRCPC, FRCP, FCAHS
President
Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of
Canada

Jennifer Barr
Chief Operating Officer – Event Coordinator
Society of Rural Physicians of Canada

Gabe Woollam, MD
President
Society of Rural Physicians of Canada

Lisa Calder, MD, MSc, FRCPC
Chief Executive Officer
Canadian Medical Protective Association

Michael Cohen, MD
President
Canadian Medical Protective Association

Major-Général Marc Bilodeau, CD, MD
Surgeon General
Canadian Armed Forces

Paul-Émile Cloutier
President and CEO
HealthCareCAN