Frequently asked questions about Government of Canada COVID-19 procurement

The Government of Canada needs products and services in support of Canada’s response to COVID-19.

Learn how to supply a needed product or service

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We are providing answers to the most frequently asked questions we have received about how the Government of Canada is buying goods and services related to COVID-19 response.

If you don’t find the answer to your question here, you can contact the National InfoLine at 1-800-811-1148 (Monday to Friday, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm ET) or by email at BPME.OSME@tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca.

On this page:

How Canada is buying goods and services to support the COVID-19 response

Q: What does the Government of Canada need?
Tender notices will be posted on Buyandsell.gc.ca as needs for goods and services arise. If you are a business that has products or services that could help Canada, we recommend that you follow upcoming tender opportunities:

  • Use the quick-search icons on the Tenders page to search, browse and subscribe to the latest tenders.
  • Learn how to benefit from our free tender email notification service on our web page Follow Opportunities.
  • Stay informed on the latest procurement-related news and website updates posted on the Buyandsell.gc.ca website by subscribing to:

The specifications for certain types of products, including certification standards where applicable, are listed at Specifications for COVID-19 Products.

Q. I have access to personal protective equipment. How can I help?
You can find information on the new Personal Protective Equipment Supply Hub that the Government of Canada has launched to bring together numerous available resources for organizations buying and selling PPE, including access to commercial sites that bring together buyers and sellers of PPE.

Q. What happened to the online form?
The call to suppliers to provide information on goods and services through an online form is now closed, and we are no longer receiving submissions. Goods and services for COVID-19 requirements will be procured through tender opportunities posted on Buyandsell.gc.ca.

Companies interested in these procurement opportunities will need to submit proposals that demonstrate they are able to meet the requirements specified in the procurements.

Certification standards, specifications and licenses for goods

Q: Can a Canadian company supply goods that have been sourced from China?
Yes, however all goods must meet all certification standards that are accepted by Canada. The specifications for certain types of products, including certification standards where applicable, are listed on the Specifications for COVID-19 Products page on Buyandsell.gc.ca.

Q: What are the certification standards for the emergency goods requested (for example: N95 and surgical masks, medical gowns)?
The specifications for certain types of products, including certification standards where applicable, are listed on the Specifications for COVID-19 Products page on Buyandsell.gc.ca.

Q: What types of certifications are required for the goods requested (for example: FDA, CSA, CE, other)?
The specifications for certain types of products, including certification standards where applicable, are listed on the Specifications for COVID-19 Products page on Buyandsell.gc.ca. The most common certifications are set by:

  • Canadian Standards Association (CSA)
  • US Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
  • Conformité Européenne Mark (CE Mark)
  • World Health Organisation (WHO)

Q: Do I need a license to sell or distribute medical devices in Canada?
Yes, Personal protective equipment, including devices such as N95 respirators, gowns, masks, gloves & face shields, are medical devices in Canada and are subject to requirements under the Medical Devices Regulations. In general, anyone who imports or sells a medical device for human use in Canada requires a Medical Device Establishment Licence (MDEL).

In light of the unprecedented demand and urgent need for products that can help limit the spread of COVID-19, Health Canada is expediting approvals of product reviews, as well as relevant establishment licences related to these types of products.
For full details, see information posted by Health Canada at Personal protective equipment against COVID-19.

Q: How long does it take to get a license?
Health Canada will expedite the review and issuance of MDELs for companies requesting to manufacture, import or distribute Class I medical devices (such as N95 facepiece respirators, gowns, masks, face shields) or nasal pharyngeal swabs in relation to COVID-19. For information on how to request an expedited MDEL application review, see Expedited access information posted by Health Canada.

Q: If I want to start manufacturing health products in response to COVID-19, how do I get authorization?
In Canada, health products including hand sanitizers and disinfectants and medical devices such as N95 respirators, surgical masks, gloves, face shields, goggles, gowns, ventilators, thermometers and diagnostic tests are subject to requirements under regulations enforced by Health Canada.

In light of the unprecedented demand and urgent need for products that can help limit the spread of COVID-19, Health Canada is expediting authorizations related to these types of products. Visit Health Canada’s COVID-19 health product industry webpage for more information.

Q: Do I need a licence to produce and sell hand sanitizer in Canada?
Yes, a licence is required to produce and sell hand sanitizer in Canada. In light of the COVID-19 crisis, Health Canada has simplified that process and has introduced interim measures to expedite the manufacture and sale of alcohol-based hand sanitizer and an interim guide on the production of ethanol for use in alcohol-based hand sanitizers.

Q: What are the specifications relating to the manufacture and sale of COVID-19 testing kits?
Only COVID-19 diagnostic tests authorized by Health Canada can be imported or sold in Canada. On March 18, 2020, the Minister of Health approved an interim order (IO) to expedite the review of these medical devices, including test kits related to COVID-19.

For more information on the process to submit an application to have a COVID-19 medical device approved, a list of currently authorized diagnostic devices, and the status of submitted applications, please refer to Health Canada’s Diagnostic devices for use against coronavirus (COVID-19).

Other information for businesses

Q: I have developed a prototype that could help with COVID-19. Can I get support or funding to test my prototype?
The Government of Canada posts opportunities for funding for Canadian innovators who want to start, grow, and get to market at
Innovative Solutions Canada.Through this program, the government buys and tests pre-commercial goods and services in a real-life setting. You can sign up for the Innovative Solutions Canada newsfeed to get a notification when new funding opportunities launch.

Q: Where can businesses get information to help them throughout the COVID-19 crisis?
The Government of Canada has created a website to help businesses during the COVID-19 crisis. You will find information to help you support your employees, develop a business contingency plan (business preparedness), as well as information on international trade, business travel and events. Please visit Support for businesses.

Q: Where can businesses find information about becoming a Government of Canada supplier?
If you are new to doing business with the Government of Canada, the Office of Small and Medium Enterprises can answer your questions about how to become a supplier and obtain a Procurement Business Number.