Snowbirds complicate vaccine rollout

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  1. Randy Filinski

    These are personal reasons to head south and the snowbirds need to accept the responsibility of their choice in a very limited supply environment. They need to be appropriately put in a phase where supply is plentiful after all essential workers who stayed home to protect us have both their doses.

    This is the ethical decision.

    • John Adams

      The limited supply situation is the direct responsibility of policy failures of the Canadian federal government – including the misadventure with the Chinese government of the supply of product for a non-existent clinical trial – when compared to the performance of many other national governments including Israel, UK, Germany and USA. Therefore it is unreasonable and unfair to blame or penalize snowbirds for this policy failure. The idea of herd immunity suggests good policy means vaccination of all in each jurisdiction no matter status on basis of residency. 350,000 snowbirds vaccinated abroad would have the effect of an early increase in supply of vaccines available in Canada for non-snowbirds.

  2. Philip Russel

    A mayor in south Florida was addressing this issue of visitors getting the vaccine. He specifically identified snowbirds and while they are not permanent residents, they are here for extended periods and if they were to get sick, they too would just clog up the hospital system. As for concerns about a registry, if such a database is designed without taking these people in mind, fire the DB designer. Our family is mixed – some American, some Canadian. Taking issue with the fact that I have already started receiving the vaccine sounds like either sour grapes or suggests that you don’t have enough to think about.

  3. Amy Lee

    I think this really loses sight of Canada’s multicultural nature. Many Canadians are dual citizens and live in other countries as expats which are in the millions, let alone the snowbirds. COVID-19 is an international problem and as another commenter pointed out herd immunity is global herd immunity, not Canadian herd immunity. Is it privilege that Canada thinks it can impose its ethical framework for distribution to another country? I think another country might say it’s more ethical to vaccinate all who live in slums first, or all who work in precarious jobs with no medical benefits and no paid sick days first. The question of documentation is no different than any other documentation when people immigrate, move for a job, or change identity. Why is this particular documentation being highlighted as a problem? No one even knows how long the vaccine effectiveness will last. The question could very well be moot.

  4. Verginia Aiello

    I write to you as a snowbird. And no, I am not currently in Florida but will heading south as soon as things settle down there and here. I read your article and it is very clear that you have a total lack of understanding on this topic both with snowbirds rushing to get vaccinated and of the snowbird community overall. Firstly, you state that snowbirds are rushing to Florida. No we are not. The governor of Florida has put out a plea to us that it is safe to go down – honestly- they miss the dollars that snowbirds put into Florida each and every year. This is why an incentive was put forth – ability to get vaccinated – we pay taxes (very high) in the USA as most Americans do – so why would we not be eligible to get the vaccine sooner? If you did your research properly, you would know that 60% of Americans are opting to NOT get vaccinated (political reasons) – so who are we taking the vaccine away from? Also to be noted, the governor of New York State actually applied a batch of vaccine due to disorganized process to rollout the vaccine – so I ask again, what American are we taking away the right to a vaccine from?
    Secondly, do you honestly believe that snowbirds are so stupid to think that we would take the 2nd dose here in Canada? Do you not think that snowbirds would ensure both doses are taken BEFORE heading back home? It’s only 28 days difference between the two doses – most snowbirds are in Florida for 6 months. So your argument has absolutely no bearing whatsoever. You are just filling space. Thirdly, the vaccines that are authorized for distribution in the USA are IDENTICAL to those authorized for distribution in Canada, hence a registry of vaccine type date and time can be brought back to Canada so it can be entered into our health care system. Is that so cumbersome? Really? I think you had nothing to write about so pick on the snowbirds. In future please get your facts straight before writing about a group that you know nothing about.

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