“The federal government has released an updated COVID-19 vaccination timeline, showing that at least 14.5 million Canadians will be able to be immunized by the end of June,” according to CTV News. “The timeline [also] shows that up to 24.5 million Canadians could be fully vaccinated by the end of June,” they continue (emphasis mine).

  • 19 million is halfway between those estimates, which is ~50% of the population
  • Canada Day — July 1st — is 50% of the way through the year

Basically, we want to be approaching about 50% of the population vaccinated by Canada Day. If we miss the mark, we still want to be around 40% by July 1st.

The WHO has estimated that a “65-70% vaccine coverage rate [is] a way to reach population immunity,” so if we’re at 50% by Canada Day, we’re in good shape to be close to 70% by Labour Day.

The idea here is to provide an easy-to-read progress indicator as we continue to ramp up vaccine distribution in Canada.

People vs doses

“Canadians who have received the vaccine” is a lower number than “Vaccine doses administered.” It’s more useful to track how many people have received at least one vaccine than to just track the total number of spent vaccines.

Both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require 2 doses, but you have to wait a few weeks before getting the second one. Initally, many more people will have just 1 dose, but, over time, the number of people with 2 doses will catch up.

How effective is 1 dose?

Somewhat effective, but it’s still unclear.

To take the Pfizer vaccine as an example:

  • both doses together are ~95% effective
  • 1 dose is estimated to be~52% or ~33% effective

Where does that leave us?

There are always unknowns, but the data we have is nevertheless useful.

The number of fully-vaccinated people is the most important number: the restrictions will end once it is high enough.

The number of people who have received a vaccine is important too: it tells us how quickly vaccines are being administered.

Watching the progress of vaccine distribution vs the number of days in the year helps us estimate how likely it is that I will be able to do a summer road trip to the Gaspésie.