Ottawa -- Canada will throw away approximately 13.6 million doses the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccination because it couldn’t find anyone to take it at home or abroad. Canada signed a deal with AstraZeneca to receive 20 million doses in 2020. Approximately 2.3 million Canadians were able to receive at least one dose. Canada opted to use its large supply of mRNA vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer BioNTech after concerns about AstraZeneca's rare, but potentially fatal, blood clots in 2021.
Canada pledged to donate 17.7 million doses of its remaining procured supply in July 2021. Health Canada released a statement Tuesday saying that 13.6 million doses had expired despite all efforts to fulfill the pledge. The statement stated that they were rejected because of a lack of demand and difficulties in distribution and absorption by recipient countries.
Canada gave 8.9 million doses AstraZeneca vaccine to the world. This included 4.8 million doses from its main source and 4.1 millions doses it purchased from the COVAX vaccination-sharing program. About 85% of Canadians have been vaccinated. This compares to 61% of the population and 16% of those living in the poorest countries.