Toronto administers record-breaking 26,000+ COVID vaccines in one day

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In April, the Texas Motor Speedway recorded more than 17,000 shots in one day — an event the City of Toronto cited as the record for a clinic in North America, and a number it beat

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The Toronto Raptors were the only team in the National Basketball Association not to play in its home arena this season due to COVID-19 restrictions. On Sunday, they handed over the venue to health authorities to smash Canada’s record for most vaccinations at a single site in a day.

The clinic at the Scotiabank Arena administered 26,771 doses of Pfizer Inc. and Moderna Inc. vaccines, according to a statement on Twitter from the facility’s owner, Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment Ltd.

Other sports venues including London Stadium and Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles have been used for mass vaccinations. The Texas Motor Speedway recorded more than 17,000 shots on one day in April — an event that Toronto officials cited as a previous record for a clinic in North America, and a number they intended to beat.

“The total COVID-19 vaccine doses administered (Sunday) are believed to be a new world record for most one-day COVID-19 vaccinations given at a single clinic,” wrote the City of Toronto in a news release.

Canada’s vaccination campaign got off to a slow start as the country struggled to get enough supply. In the middle of May, only three per cent of residents had been fully vaccinated.

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But the pace has accelerated as more shipments of Pfizer and Moderna vaccines arrived, and about one-quarter of the population has now received two shots, according to CTV News.

Some economists have estimated Canada will have 75 per cent of its population fully vaccinated by late July or August.

That’s putting pressure on the government of Justin Trudeau to ease border restrictions that have kept out tourists and many other travelers since the pandemic began — and forced the Raptors and baseball’s Toronto Blue Jays to play their home games at U.S. stadiums.