Trudeau creates coronavirus committee to oversee Canada's response to outbreak

Mar 5, 2020

Canada's Prime Minister has created a new coronavirus committee to oversee the nation's response. PM Justin Trudeau said the cabinet-level committee will look at economic disruptions and health impacts of the new threat.

The move comes as the number of cases in the country now stands at 35. Trudeau explained the purpose of the new role in a press conference on Wednesday.

“We’ve created a cabinet committee that will have as a regular task to coordinate Canada’s response to ensure Canadians are getting the best information," he said, "and make sure that we’re watching carefully on the economic impacts of this virus on top of the health impacts on Canadians.”

According to the CBC, the new committee will be chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland and work with the country's Incident Response Group. 

The majority of the COVID-19 cases are clustered in and around Toronto, with 13 affected in British Columbia and 2 in Quebec. The Public Health Agency of Canada says the risk to Canadians remains relatively low, even as the number of cases they’re investigating increases.

"We recognize that basing on decisions on evidence, on facts, on the best science available is going to be extraordinarily important for keeping Canadians safe," Trudeau said.