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News & Events News Bites

News Bites from CDA Knowledge Networks – 2021/03/31

The Government of Canada makes historic investment to strengthen Canada’s biomanufacturing sector. Canada.ca, March 31. Investment demonstrates the Government of Canada’s commitment to grow domestic biomanufacturing capacity and to build preparedness for future pandemics. Read more

Pfizer says its COVID-19 vaccine protects younger teens. ctvnews.ca, March 31. Most COVID-19 vaccines being rolled out worldwide are for adults, who are at higher risk from the coronavirus. Pfizer's vaccine is authorized for ages 16 and older. But vaccinating children of all ages will be critical to stopping the pandemic -- and helping schools, at least the upper grades, start to look a little more normal after months of disruption. Read more

AstraZeneca-Oxford's COVID-19 vaccine safety questions answered. Cbc.ca, March 31. The recommendation to pause AstraZeneca-Oxford COVID-19 vaccinations among Canadians under age 55 over concerns the vaccine is linked to a rare blood clotting condition has prompted questions. Here are some answers. Health Canada is requiring AstraZeneca and Verity Pharmaceuticals/Serum Institute of India, maker of the Covishield version of the vaccine, to take a detailed look at the benefits and risks of their vaccines by age and sex as part of the regulator's evaluation of rare blood clotting events following vaccination. Read more

As weather warms, better messaging needed around low outdoor COVID-19 risk: experts. Ctvnews.ca, March 31. Images of friends sitting spaced out on a backyard patio table, or chatting on opposite ends of a park bench are part of a new COVID-19 ad campaign from Britain's National Health Service. The message? If you're going to socialize, take it outside. As warm spring weather begins to envelop the Canadian provinces, experts here say it's time to embrace similar rhetoric. Read more

Government, Sanofi officials unveil $925M in vaccine funding in Toronto. cbc.ca, March 31. Representatives from all three levels of government announced joint funding to expand Canada's vaccine manufacturing capacity in Toronto on Wednesday morning. The federal government will spend $415 million on the partnership with Sanofi Pasteur Ltd. Ontario's government will contribute $55 million to the project. Ontario Premier Doug Ford, federal Health Minister Patty Hajdu and Toronto Mayor John Tory are attending the announcement in North York. Read more

Ontario reports more than 2,300 new COVID-19 cases as ICU numbers reach record high. ctvnews.ca, March 31. Ontario health officials reported more than 2,300 new cases of COVID-19 as the province reached a record high number of people battling the disease in its intensive care units. The province confirmed 2,333 new cases of the novel coronavirus on Wednesday. Daily case numbers have remained above the 2,000 mark for seven straight days. Read more

Ontario's vaccine program needs to shift focus to high-risk populations, expert says. ctvnews.ca, March 31. Using age as a guide worked early in the pandemic when long-term care homes and elderly people were bearing the brunt of the COVID-19 pandemic, but now frontline workers and other high-risk populations are being left unprotected due to age restrictions. Read more

Sask. aims to outpace rise of COVID-19 variants with vaccines. ctvnews.ca, March 31. The province stopped short of establishing new restrictions for southern parts of the province on Tuesday, amid mounting COVID-19 variant cases. In place of more measures, the government urged residents to take precautions and expressed confidence vaccination rates will increase. Read more

Coronavirus: Saskatchewan’s current public health orders extended to April 12. globalnews.ca, March 30. All current public health orders in Saskatchewan are being extended. The province’s chief medical health officer, Dr. Saqib Shahab, said the current measures will remain in place until April 12, at which time they will be reviewed. Read more

Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Tuesday. cbc.ca, March 30:  WHO chief says world can't wait until COVID-19 pandemic is over 'to start planning for the next one. Ontario isn't ruling out another delay to school spring break. New data shows COVID-19 pandemic now 'completely out of control' in Ontario, key scientific adviser says. B.C. implements sweeping restrictions on indoor dining, group fitness for 3-week circuit-breaker. Why Canada is suspending use of AstraZeneca vaccine in people under 55. German state of Berlin suspending use of AstraZeneca's coronavirus vaccine for people under 60 due to reports of blood clots. Read more

Canadians far more wary of AstraZeneca than other COVID-19 vaccines: Poll. cp24.com, March 30: Just 53 per cent of respondents to the poll, conducted by Leger and the Association for Canadian Studies, said they would trust the AstraZeneca vaccine being given to themselves or family members to immunize them against the coronavirus that causes COVID‑19. That was far less than the 82 per cent who said they'd trust being injected with the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine or the 77 per cent who said the same about the Moderna vaccine. Read more

AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine not recommended for those under 55, NACI says. globalnews.ca, March 29: Canada’s National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) is now recommending AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine not be administered to people under the age of 55. The committee cited concerns over reports of blood clots as its reason for issuing the new guidance. Read more

Several provinces halt AstraZeneca vaccine for those under 55 in wake of new NACI guidelines. ctvnews.ca, March 29: Several provinces have halted administration of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine to those under the age of 55 following new recommendations from Canada's National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI). On Monday, the NACI recommended pausing administration of the AstraZeneca vaccine to those under the age of 55, pending further investigation on reported cases of vaccine-induced prothrombotic immune thrombocytopenia (VIPIT), a rare blood clotting disorder, in Europe. Read more

'A very clear shift': Younger people getting sicker, faster with COVID, doctors say. nationalpost.com, March 29: It’s not clear what’s driving that shift, but doctors say highly contagious variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus are undoubtedly playing a role. Read more

Marketplace flagged over 800 social media posts with COVID-19 misinformation. Only a fraction were removed. cbc.ca, March 30: Claims that vaccines cause sterility, fake COVID treatments among posts Facebook hadn't removed as of March 29. The world's social media giants promised to crack down on harmful COVID-19 misinformation that has proliferated since the pandemic began, but a CBC Marketplace investigation found that when problematic posts were flagged, most weren't labelled or removed. Read more

G7 countries agree to collaborate on vaccine passports: Hajdu. ipolitics.ca, March 29: The health ministers from the G7 — Canada, the U.S., the U.K., France, Germany, Italy, and Japan — met Monday morning and “briefly” discussed the idea, Hajdu said. “The G7 partners agreed that there needs to be some consistency and some collaboration among the countries, so we have some kind of system that would be recognizable, no matter where a person was travelling,” Hajdu said. Read more

Analysis: Montreal authorities struggling with COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy. montrealgazette.com, March 30: Public health authorities are opening vaccination centres in Côte-des-Neiges and Outremont to all Montrealers in the 60-plus age group after hundreds of slots went unfilled over the weekend. Still, Montreal’s vaccine rollout was made all the more complicated on Monday after the Quebec government announced the AstraZeneca vaccine will not be given to people under the age of 55. Read more

COVID study reveals that more mental health supports are needed on First Nations. thestar.com, March 29:  A new report by a committee of MPs — who spent the past year studying the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on Indigenous populations in Canada — has revealed that the reservations, many of which have very limited access to resources, need extra mental health support during the pandemic. A grim picture was painted by representatives of dozens of First Nations, Inuit, and Metis communities and organizations in regards to the state of health and social infrastructure in their jurisdictions. Read more

Canada's nursing homes have worst record for COVID-19 deaths among wealthy nations: report. cbc.ca, March 30: A new report released by the Canadian Institute for Health Information found that the proportion of deaths in nursing homes represented 69 per cent of Canada's overall COVID-19 deaths, significantly higher than the international average of 41 per cent. Read more

Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Monday. cbc.ca, March 29: More than 5.1 million COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in Canada as of Sunday. Vaccine nationalism an issue of "enlightened self-interest," UN Secretary General warns. Read more

P.E.I. suspends AstraZeneca vaccine program. cbc.ca, March 29: P.E.I. has suspended the delivery of the AstraZeneca-Oxford COVID-19 vaccine. The province had set aside its AstraZeneca vaccines for people aged 18 to 29 who are working directly with the public. ... Responding to a CBC News email, a spokesperson for the Department of Health confirmed delivery of the vaccine had been suspended. "Appointments at pharmacies for AstraZeneca vaccine for those 18-29 are on hold pending anticipated further information from Health Canada and NACI," the email said. Read more

Canada expecting to receive 3.3M vaccine doses this week. ctvnews.ca, March 29: The expected influx would mark the single-largest week of deliveries into Canada since the start of the pandemic, thanks to planned shipments from three different sources. Read more

'Stronger' measures needed across Canada to suppress COVID-19 resurgence: Tam. ctvnews.ca, March 27: Canada's chief public health officer warned Saturday that current health orders are not enough to stop rapid growth of COVID-19, as provinces push ahead with plans to reopen their economies. Longer-range forecast models predict a resurgence of COVID-19 infections unless public health measures are enhanced and strictly followed, Dr. Theresa Tam said. Read more

“Unprecedented”: How Canada approved five vaccines for COVID-19 in under a year. nationalpost.com, March 28: The five non-COVID vaccines approved, four for influenza and one for shingles, took an average of 397 days from the day the company applied for approval in Canada, until that approval was granted. The average time for COVID-19 vaccines? 82 days. Read more

Mandatory vaccines? Experts weigh rights of residents, staff in nursing homes. cbc.ca, March 29: Vaccination rates among staff starkly lower than those for residents in Ottawa nursing homes. Read more

Hundreds of northern Ontario health workers decline COVID vaccine. cbc.ca, March 29: Hospitals and long-term care homes happy if 10-20 per cent of workers decline vaccine. Hundreds of workers at hospitals and nursing homes in northern Ontario are saying no to the COVID-19 vaccine. But administrators say they can't force them to get the shot or send them home when they're already short-staffed. Read more

'Vaccine passport' supported by majority of British Columbians: poll. citynews1130.com, March 28: Survey finds 73 per cent of British Columbians support a vaccine passport to travel abroad. Another 62 per cent of people support proof of vaccination for other activities like sport events, concerts and gyms. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has previously said Canada is not considering a vaccine passport. Read more

We’re going to keep doing this’: Scarborough clinic offering COVID-19 vaccine to undocumented workers. thestar.com, March 26: Staring at a lineup of undocumented workers waiting for their COVID‑19 vaccines at his clinic on Wednesday, Dr. Paul Caulford still wasn’t sure his plan would work. … So as he entered his first undocumented patient’s name into the province’s vaccine registry with only a birthdate and phone number, he held his breath. After the registration went through, Caulford exhaled. He gave the shot and then dozens more. Read more

Covid-19 live news: EMA says 'no evidence' to support restricting use of AstraZeneca; German leaders demand tighter lockdown. theguardian.com, March 31. Europe’s medicines agency says no risk factors identified; two state premiers say time for discussion is over and lockdown needed Pfizer/BioNTech finds vaccine safe and effective for children 12 to 15 Outdoor mask decree met with dismay by Spain’s tourism industry Germany restricts use of AstraZeneca jab to over-60s Merkel, Macron and Putin in talks about using Sputnik V jab, says Kremlin PwC staff in UK to split office and home-working time after pandemic. Read more

China reports COVID-19 outbreak on border with Myanmar. ctvnews.ca, March 31. At least nine people have tested positive for COVID-19 in a Chinese city on the border with Myanmar, health officials said Wednesday. Five are Chinese citizens are four are Myanmar nationals, the Yunnan Province Health Commission said in a report posted online. The city of Ruili, with a population of about 210,000 people, said all residents would be tested for COVID-19 and would have to home quarantine for one week. The residential compound where the infections were found has been locked down. Read more

Wisconsin Supreme Court strikes down mask mandate. ctvnews.ca, March 31. The Wisconsin Supreme Court on Wednesday struck down Gov. Tony Evers' statewide mask mandate Wednesday, stripping the governor of one of his last remaining tools to curb large-scale spread of COVID-19 as the state stands on the precipice of another surge in infections. The conservative-leaning court ruled 4-3 that Evers violated state law by unilaterally issuing multiple emergency orders to extend the mandate for months. The court found Evers needed legislative approval to issue more orders after the initial 60-day mandate he issued in August expired. Read more

A dangerous coronavirus variant is wreaking havoc in parts of Europe. Experts fear US could be next. cnn.com, March 31. A dangerous coronavirus variant is wreaking havoc in other parts of the world, so the US must stick with safety measures over the next few months to prevent that kind of damage as the variant takes more of a hold stateside, an expert says. The B.1.1.7 variant, first spotted in the UK, is more contagious, may cause more severe disease and is rapidly infecting younger populations, epidemiologist Michael Osterholm told CNN on Tuesday night. Recent research suggests the strain may also be more deadly. Read more

Mexico's indirect COVID-19 deaths may be over 120,000. Ctvnews.ca, March 31. Many of the over 120,000 excess deaths Mexico suffered so far during the pandemic may have been indirectly caused by the coronavirus, even if those people didn't die of COVID-19, Mexican officials said Tuesday. A "very significant part" of those deaths were people who were suffering heart problems but were too afraid to go the hospital for fear of getting infected, said Dr. Ruy Lopez Ridaura, the country's director of disease prevention and control. Read more

Covid-19 live updates. washingtonpost.com, March 30: New U.S. coronavirus cases rise by 12 percent; nation braces for fourth pandemic wave. President Biden on Monday implored leaders of state and local governments to continue requiring face coverings in public in an effort to curb coronavirus infections that are back on the rise across the country. Read more

World leaders call for COVID-19 pandemic treaty, but short on details. ctvnews.ca, March 30: More than 20 heads of government and global agencies called in a commentary published Tuesday for an international treaty for pandemic preparedness that they say will protect future generations in the wake of COVID-19. But there were few details to explain how such an agreement might actually compel countries to act more co-operatively. Read more

COVID-19 virus origin likely animal to human transmission: WHO report. abcnews.go.com, March 30: Scientists have more evidence, but we may never know exactly what happened. The World Health Organization and China released a long-awaited joint report into the origins of COVID-19 on Tuesday, pointing to transmission from bats to another animal and subsequently to humans as the most likely way the pandemic began. Read more

Biden admin remakes vaccine strategy after mass vaccination sites fizzle. politico.com, March 29: The federal government has found that Americans prefer vaccination at pharmacies over expensive mega-sites. The Biden administration is rethinking a costly system of government-run mass vaccination sites after data revealed the program is lagging well behind a much cheaper federal effort to distribute doses via retail pharmacies. Read more

CDC director warns of 'impending doom' on potential new COVID-19 surge. thehill.com, March 29:  The director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Monday warned of "impending doom" over rising coronavirus cases, telling the public that even though vaccines are being rolled out quickly, a fourth surge could happen if people don't start taking precautions. Read more

German state suspends AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine use for under-60s. ctvnews.ca, March 30: The German state of Berlin has again suspended the use of AstraZeneca's coronavirus vaccine for those aged under 60 due to new reports of unusual blood clots in people who have received the shot, officials said Tuesday. The decision was taken as a precaution ahead of a meeting later Tuesday of representatives from all of Germany's 16 states and further recommendations expected from national medical regulators. Read more

WHO draft report says animals likely source of COVID-19. ctvnews.ca, March 29: A joint World Health Organization-China study on the origins of COVID-19 says that transmission of the virus from bats to humans through another animal is the most likely scenario and that a lab leak is "extremely unlikely," according to a draft copy obtained by The Associated Press. ... The report, which is expected to be made public Tuesday, is being closely watched since discovering the origins of the virus could help scientists prevent future pandemics -- but it's also extremely sensitive since China bristles at any suggestion that it is to blame for the current one. Repeated delays in the report's release have raised questions about whether the Chinese side was trying to skew its conclusions. Read more

COVID-19 vaccines prevent 90 percent of all infections, CDC study says. thehill.com, March 29: The two mRNA coronavirus vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech prevent 90 percent of infections, according to a new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The results show strong evidence that the vaccines work against preventing all infections, including asymptomatic and pre-symptomatic infections. Read more

Covid-19 Live Updates. washingtonpost.com, March 29: The Biden administration and private companies are working to develop a standard for “vaccine passports” that would allow Americans to prove they have received coronavirus vaccinations as businesses try to reopen. Despite crushing U.S. sanctions and a small population, Cuba is set to become the world’s smallest country to develop multiple coronavirus vaccines. Read more

Study will track COVID transmission among vaccinated college students. axios.com, March 26: Top scientists launched a National Institutes of Health-backed study with thousands of college students to determine whether Moderna's COVID vaccine can prevent asymptomatic spread of the virus. The results of the trial could provide vaccinated individuals insight on how careful they really need to be when in close contact with others. Read more

Health Unit Introduces Affordable Dental Program. ckdr.net, March 30: Dryden, ON – The Northwestern Health Unit is teaming up with Green Shield Canada to help treat adults with dental problems. The Green Door project is providing $360,000 over three years to help people who are unable to pay for dental care. Read more

Relaunch of a dental therapy program in Sask. would address needs of First Nations. thestarphoenix.com, March 29: Dental therapists — previously known as dental nurses — work in rural and remote communities and provide basic oral health services, including prevention, fillings and extractions. Nearly a decade after Canada’s National School of Dental Therapy shut its doors, three Saskatchewan organizations have joined forces in an effort to resume the teaching of dental therapy in the country. Read more

Northern partnership aims to offer unique dental therapy program. meadowlakenow.com, March 29 (also in Northeast Now): A proposed health program could put a smile on the face of Indigenous populations, especially those in remote communities. The Northern Inter Tribal Health Authority (NITHA), along with the University of Saskatchewan (USask) and Saskatchewan Polytechnic, are partnering on a dental therapy program—to be based in Saskatchewan—that could start training students next year. Read more

Government announces $20 million in funding for the distribution of naloxone kits and opioid overdose response training to support communities. municipalinfonet.com, March 30: In many areas across Canada, the COVID-19 pandemic has tragically worsened the ongoing health crisis of opioid-related harms and deaths. People who use drugs continue to face barriers and risks related to the toxicity of the illegal drug supply and reduced access to health and social services, including life-saving harm reduction and treatment. Read more

Want to know how much added sugar is in your favourite foods? Canadian companies don't have to tell you. cbc.ca, March 28: Despite having to disclose many details about ingredients, specific allergens, calorie counts and other nutritional information on labels, food manufacturers are not required to include the amount of added sugar a product contains and don't have to disclose that information to an inquiring consumer, a CBC Marketplace investigation has found. Read more

Edmonton council to consider lobbying feds to declare opioid crisis a national public health emergency. edmonton.ctvnews.ca, March 26: City council will consider lobbying the federal government to declare the opioid crisis a national public health emergency and to have them help pay for treatment programs after a motion was considered on Friday. Academics, advocates, and some with lived experience came to council’s executive committee with a consensus: More needs to be done to help address the opioid crisis. Read more

Suicide deaths have declined during the pandemic, but experts warn the toll might be yet to come. nationalpost.com, March 29: Suicides are a complex issue, and experts caution that the downward trend in death rates in 2020 does not tell the whole story. Read more

Supreme Court ruling on federal carbon tax does not address the unfairness it imposes on small business. cfib.fcei.ca, March 25: Today’s ruling by the Supreme Court of Canada upholding the federal carbon tax is deeply disappointing for small businesses in Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta, says the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB). The federal carbon tax, which is set to increase on April 1, places a disproportionately high financial burden on small firms, while it is said to give consumers bigger rebates than the amount they pay in. Read more

Study: Medicaid dental coverage helps enrollees seek new jobs, do better at ones they have. ada.org, March 29: A University of Michigan study suggests that Medicaid’s dental coverage has improved enrollees’ health in ways that have helped them seek a new job or do better at the one they have. Read more

National MPs agree on 'compromise' on water fluoridation which could see them support Government's centralisation push. stuff.co.nz, March 30: National deputy leader Shane Reti says his party could support the Government’s move to centralise the control of water fluoridation, if local DHBs still get consulted on the decision. Read more

Cannabis almost as addictive as opioids among teens: study. bnnbloomberg.ca, March 29: Teenagers’ addiction rates for cannabis are about the same as for prescription opioids, according to a new study of drugs and youth. A year after first trying cannabis, almost 10.7 per cent of adolescents age 12 to 17 met the criteria of addiction. Those in the same age group who tried prescription opioids had a similar addiction rate of 11.2 per cent, according to the study, published Monday in JAMA Pediatrics. Read more

Post-lockdown consumers reach for alcohol-free drinks to avoid hangovers. cbsnews.com, March 30: Restaurants and bars in the U.S. are reopening and Americans who have been cooped up for more than a year are relishing socializing in person again. What's different, though, is that watering-hole patrons are increasingly consuming alcohol-free cocktails, wine and beer, after lockdown fueled an uptick in alcohol sales in the early months of the pandemic. Read more

Turning to 'Dr. Google' may not be as anxiety-inducing or misleading as believed, study finds. ctvnews.ca, March 30: …according to a new study from the U.S., turning to “Dr. Google” does not make a person’s assessment of their symptoms less accurate, or worsen their anxiety regarding their health. The study, published in JAMA Network Open on Monday, found that patients having Googled their symptoms actually led to a slight improvement in diagnosis once they were in a medical setting, contrary to the common concern that the internet can lead patients down the wrong path. Read more

People with severe gum disease may be twice as likely to have increased blood pressure. eurekalert.org, March 29: Adults with periodontitis, a severe gum infection, may be significantly more likely to have higher blood pressure compared to individuals who had healthy gums, according to new research published today in Hypertension. Read more

Rx for Rural Health | Lack of insurance, poverty, drug abuse lead to dental problems. times-news.com, March 28: While rates of emergency department visits for dental conditions are lowering in Maryland among people younger than age 65, numbers are on the rise for senior citizens. Read more

Did COVID-19 stress, uncertainty stall anti-smoking push? newwestrecord.ca, March 28: A year after COVID-19 upended life for millions of Americans, there are troubling signs that the coronavirus may have also slowed progress against another deadly health threat: smoking. Read more

The pandemic dramatically reduced flu cases. That could backfire. politico.com, March 25: The low levels of flu during the Covid-19 pandemic have left experts with a much smaller pool of data used for predicting which flu strains will predominate next winter. Read more

Continuing Education Matters

Dalhousie University – Current course offerings

McGill University – Continuing dental education

Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry University – Continuing professional development

Université Laval – Formation continue

University of Manitoba – Continuing professional development

Université de Montréal – Formation dentaire continue

University of Alberta – Program and courses

University of British Columbia – Calendar of courses

University of Saskatchewan – Continuing professional dental education

University of Toronto – Continuing dental education



April 12-17: The New World of Dentistry 2021. Manitoba Dental Association co-hosts the new national 2021 Virtual Dental Convention with the Canadian Dental Association. Read more

May 6-8: 2021 Ontario Dental Association Annual Spring Meeting (ASM21)  Read more

June 10-11: Atlantic Virtual Dental Convention. Read more

September 26-29: FDI World Dental Congress | Special Edition | Sydney 2021 Virtual. Read more

Please let us know about upcoming continuing education meetings that could be of interest to Canadian dentists by emailing us at oasisdiscussions@cda-adc.ca

We invite you to send us leads to news stories worth sharing oasisdiscussions@cda-adc.ca.

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