The former Chief of Defence Staff for the Canadian Forces has been tapped to lead Ontario’s newly formed Ministers’ COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Task Force.
Rick Hillier, who also served as Commander of the NATO-led forces during the war in Afghanistan, will lead what the Ontario Government describes as the largest vaccine rollout in a generation.
“The fact that we are setting up this task force is a sign that we are making progress in the fight against COVID-19,” said Premier Doug Ford. “We still have a long way to go, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. That’s why I have asked General Hillier to lead this effort, because we need the best of the best for the monumental task at hand.”
The task force is designed to advise the province’s development and implementation of a COVID-19 immunization program.
It will include cross-government and external representation with expertise in operations and logistics, intergovernmental relations, health and information technology among other disciplines.
“We are on the verge of a critical new phase in our efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19, and General Hillier’s track record of leadership and compassion makes him the right person to lead our task force,” said Health Minister Christine Elliott. “In the meantime, it’s important to keep in mind that a vaccine is still months away, so I’m urging everyone to continue following public health advice in order to limit the spread of COVID-19 and keep our communities safe.”
Ontario is looking at an early rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine program with vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna.
The Province says it will provide updates as more details become available.