Health & Safety
COVID-19’s fall resurgence reaches new daily case highs in Ontario, Quebec
By Amy Smart and Cassandra Szklarski/The Canadian Press
COVID-19 cases surged across Canada as several provinces smashed daily infection records and the nationwide tally crested 4,000 on Sunday.
Cases swelled to new heights in Ontario and Quebec, while devastating outbreaks at two Winnipeg long-term care homes sparked an official investigation by the provincial government.
Nationally, 264,113 people have had their COVID-19 infections confirmed since the pandemic began.
Quebec reported 1,397 new cases, up slightly from a previous record set about one month ago, while Ontario announced 1,328 daily cases, nearly 200 more than Saturday’s record-breaking tally.
Manitoba, which reported 441 new COVID-19 cases and three new deaths — all women in the Winnipeg health region.
Manitoba launches investigation
Earlier in the day, Health Minister Cameron Friesen said the province would launch an independent investigation into how a jump in cases and deaths were handled at Parkview Place and Maples Personal Care Home, both owned by Revera.
At the Maples home, seven deaths within two days have been linked to COVID-19.
“Manitobans need answers,” Friesen said.
Case counts continued their worrisome climb further west as well.
Saskatchewan recorded 159 new COVID-19 cases and Alberta marked down 727, although that province said on its website that due to technical issues the new figures are preliminary and subject to reconciliation.
New restrictions in B.C.
Meanwhile, British Columbians living on the Lower Mainland woke up to new restrictions aimed at reining in an explosion of cases.
The province reported 567 new cases Saturday, most of them in the Fraser and Vancouver Coastal health regions.
Tight new measures banned social gatherings and strongly discouraged travel in and out of those two regions for the next two weeks.
Indoor physical group activities such as yoga and spin class were also paused, while local health officials said they would close businesses that don’t have COVID-19 safety plans in place.
In the North, Nunavut doubled its case count from one to two. The second infected person is asymptomatic and belongs to the same household as the first case, health officials said.
Exposures in Halifax
Canada’s chief public health officer said Sunday an average of more than 60,938 people have been tested daily over the past week, with 4.7 per cent testing positive.
Community spread was of particular concern in Nova Scotia, where Premier Stephen McNeil released a statement saying he’s worried about the growing number of potential exposures in and around Halifax.
Early Sunday, public health officials said anyone at a Halifax martini bar on Monday night should get tested for COVID-19. Similar warnings have been issued for sports venues and the city transit system in recent days.
Nova Scotia recorded three new cases for a total of 20 active cases, while New Brunswick and Newfoundland each recorded just one.
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