More Ontario regions face increased restrictions as province records 1,746 new COVID-19 cases
Public health measures are ramping up in five regions across Ontario on Monday, with one more region moving to the “red alert” level on the province’s tiered pandemic response plan.
Windsor-Essex is entering the red level, Haldimand-Norfolk is entering the orange level and Hastings Prince Edward, Lambton and Northwestern are entering the yellow zone.
The province said the regions will stay in their new categories for at least 28 days, or two COVID-19 incubation periods, before a change is considered.
Ontario’s network of labs processed 39,406 more test samples of the novel coronavirus, and recorded a test positivity rate of 4.6%. 618 people are hospitalized with COVID-19 in Ontario, 168 in ICU, 108 are on a ventilator. <a href=”https://t.co/22XcdlRiS2″>https://t.co/22XcdlRiS2</a>
Ontario on Monday reported 1,746 cases of COVID-19, with 622 new cases in Toronto and 390 in Peel Region, which are both under lockdown measures. Health Minister Christine Elliott said in a tweet that more than 39,400 tests had been completed.
The province reported eight additional deaths, bringing Ontario’s death toll to 3,656. Hospitalizations hit 618, with 168 in intensive care, according to provincial data.
Meanwhile, a window company in York Region, which is currently in the red alert zone, has declared a COVID-19 outbreak after 62 cases were confirmed there.
Health officials say this is the second outbreak at State Windows Corporation’s facility, following an initial outbreak in May that ended up infecting 17 people.
With many children continuing to attend school virtually during the pandemic, Premier Doug Ford on Monday announced a one-time support payment — of either $ 200 or $ 250 per child — to offset education-related expenses for families. The funds can be used for expenses including technology, school supplies and developmental resources.
What’s happening across Canada
As of 3:30 p.m. ET on Monday, Canada’s COVID-19 case count stood at 374,051, with 64,773 of those considered active cases. A CBC News tally of deaths based on provincial reports, regional health information and CBC’s reporting stood at 12,076.
In Saskatchewan,more than 100 medical students have signed an open letter to the provincial government calling for more action to control the spread of COVID-19.
In the letter, the University of Saskatchewan students thank the government for some of the measures already taken, such as mandatory indoor masking, but say they’re not enough.
Saskatchewan reported 325 new cases and two COVID-19 deaths on Monday. Along with 49 recoveries, there are now 3,879 active cases across the province.
Officials also reported 123 hospitalizations, which is a new record for the province.
Manitoba reported 343 new cases on Monday, along with 11 new COVID-19 deaths, including a man in his 30s and a woman in her 40s. Seven of the deaths are connected to outbreaks at long-term care homes
The province also hit a new record high for COVID-19 hospitalizations with 342 people in hospital, 43 of whom are in intensive care.
Two Manitoba churches held drive-in services over the weekend, in violation of public health orders capping gatherings at five people and ordering religious services to move online.
WATCH | Steinbach, Man., pastor says RCMP is ‘blocking God’ by stopping drive-in church service:
Members of a church in Steinbach, Man., a COVID-19 hotspot, clashed with the RCMP when they tried to enforce public health measures prohibiting all gatherings, including religious services. The pastor said officers were ‘blocking God.’ 2:35
Quebec reported 1,333 new cases of COVID-19 and 23 additional deaths on Monday, bringing the number of deaths in the province to 7,056. Hospitalizations stood at 693 in Quebec, with 94 in intensive care, according to a provincial tally.
The update comes a day after a Montreal long-term care home transferred 20 residents to local hospitals after COVID-19 took hold at the home in the last week, concerning officials and terrifying families.
Quebec long-term care homes were hit hard during the first wave of the pandemic last spring. Many facilities were under-staffed and in some cases, personnel moved between centres — allowing the virus to spread more easily.
Newfoundland and Labrador reported one new case on Monday, bringing the total number of cases in the province to 338.Prince Edward Island, which has just four active cases total, had no new cases to report on Monday.
Nova Scotia reported 16 new cases on Monday. The province started using pop-up clinics to test for COVID-19 last week.
WATCH | N.L. premier explains ‘difficult decision’ to leave Atlantic bubble:
Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Andrew Furey says he is ‘following the evidence’ with the decision to pull out of the Atlantic bubble for now. 8:30
While the overall numbers are far lower than what health officials are seeing in Central and Western Canada, the recent uptick in COVID-19 cases in several Atlantic provinces sparked enough concern that both Newfoundland and Labrador and P.E.I. decided to temporarily withdraw from the bubble that allowed free movement between the provinces.
Newfoundland Premier Andrew Furey told CBC’s Rosemary Barton that his province’s decision to temporarily leave the Atlantic travel bubble was a “tough decision — but it was one that we based on evidence.”
Not long after the changes announced by Newfoundland and P.E.I., New Brunswick added some border restrictions of its own, saying that people travelling into the province — including people who live in other Atlantic provinces — would be required to self-isolate for 14 days unless exempt.
“Registration for travel into New Brunswick, including New Brunswickers returning home from travel, is also now mandatory,” the province said in a statement last week.
Alberta reported 1,608 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday, the second-highest daily total in the province since the pandemic began. The province, which has reported a total 533 deaths, said Sunday that there were 435 people hospitalized with COVID-19. Ninety-five of those people were being treated in intensive care units.
In British Columbia, which doesn’t provide COVID-19 data on weekends, a church in Langley was hit with a $ 2,300 fine for holding an in-person religious service, which is currently prohibited.
There was no new case reported in the Northwest Territories on Sunday.
Have questions about COVID-19 in Canada? Join Adrienne Arsenault and Andrew Chang of The National for a virtual town hall.
What’s happening around the world
WATCH | Consider COVID-19 risks of holiday celebrations, urges WHO chief:
‘We all need to consider whose life we might be gambling with’ during holiday celebrations because of the coronavirus, says World Health Organization director general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. 2:19
From The Associated Press and Reuters, last updated at 1:30 p.m. ET
As of Monday afternoon, more than 62.9 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported worldwide, with more than 40.3 million of those considered recovered or resolved, according to Johns Hopkins University. The global death toll stood at more than 1.4 million.
Moderna Inc. said it would ask U.S. and European regulators Monday to allow emergency use of its COVID-19 vaccine as new study results confirm the shots offer strong protection — ramping up the race to begin limited vaccinations as the coronavirus pandemic worsens.
Multiple vaccine candidates must succeed for the world to stamp out the pandemic, which has been on the upswing in the U.S. and Europe. U.S. hospitals have been stretched to the limit as the nation has seen more than 160,000 new cases per day and more than 1,400 daily deaths.
Moderna is just behind Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech in seeking to begin vaccinations in the U.S. in December. Across the Atlantic, British regulators also are assessing the Pfizer shot and another from AstraZeneca.
In the Asia-Pacific region, Vietnam confirmed on Monday its first locally transmitted case of the coronavirus in nearly three months, after the infection of a man related to a flight attendant who had tested positive after returning from Japan two weeks ago.
The country’s health minister ordered provinces and state agencies to tighten screening and controls and contact tracing efforts were launched after the 32-year-old man was confirmed as the first reported domestic infection in 89 days.
With its strict quarantine and tracking measures, Vietnam has managed to quickly contain its coronavirus outbreaks, allowing it to resume its economic activities earlier than much of Asia.
Vietnam crushed its first wave of coronavirus infections in April and went nearly 100 days without local transmission until the virus re-emerged and was quickly contained in the central city of Danang in July.
Indonesia reported a record daily rise in coronavirus infections on Sunday with 6,267 cases, bringing the total to 534,266, data from the country’s COVID-19 task force showed.
Cambodia’s Education Ministry has ordered all state schools to close until the start of the next school year in January after a rare local outbreak of the coronavirus.
Education Minister Hang Chuon Naron issued a statement late Sunday saying that all schools will be shut to prevent students from being infected. Public schools will remain closed until Jan. 11, the start of the next school year, while private schools must close for two weeks, he said. Students in private schools will be permitted to study online.
Cambodia has reported only 323 cases of the virus since the pandemic began, most of them acquired abroad, with no confirmed deaths.
In the Americas, U.S. health authorities will hold an emergency meeting this week to recommend that a coronavirus vaccine awaiting approval be given first to health-care professionals and people in long-term care facilities.
Counties across California, meanwhile, are imposing stricter COVID-19 restrictions on Monday as cases surge statewide and Thanksgiving travellers return home.
Health officials are preparing for a wave of cases in the next two or three weeks that could be tied to holiday gatherings.
Los Angeles County, for example, will impose a lockdown calling for its 10 million residents to stay home beginning Monday.
WATCH | How testing helped Cornell University become a model of COVID-19 prevention:
At the start of the school year, Cornell University implemented a strategy of regular testing and robust contact tracing on campus. The plan was expensive, but it’s prevented any major COVID-19 outbreaks at the New York institution. 8:19
The state reported 7,415 coronavirus hospitalizations on Sunday, citing the most recently available data from the previous day. More than 1,700 of those patients were in intensive care units. California’s previous record was 7,170 in July.
As of Sunday, California has had nearly 1.2 million confirmed coronavirus cases and more than 19,000 deaths since the pandemic began. The state reported around 15,600 new cases on Saturday.
Mexico reported 6,388 new confirmed coronavirus infections and 196 additional deaths on Sunday, health ministry data showed.
In Africa, mass vaccination against COVID-19 is unlikely to start in Africa until midway through next year and keeping vaccines cold could be a big challenge, the continent’s disease control group said.
Kenya’s central bank has cut its forecast for 2020 economic growth by more than half, joining the Treasury in realizing that the coronavirus had inflicted more damage to the economy than previously thought.
In Europe, Belgium will let shops reopen from Tuesday, but keep other curbs over the festive period, while Italy will ease anti-COVID-19 restrictions in five regions from Sunday. Ireland will allow shops, restaurants, gyms and pubs serving food to reopen next week and permit travel between counties from Dec. 18.
Italy reported 541 coronavirus-related deaths on Sunday, against 686 the day before, and 20,648 new infections, down from 26,323 on Saturday, the health ministry said.
While Italy’s daily death tolls have been among the highest in Europe over recent days, the rise in hospital admissions and intensive care occupancy is slowing, suggesting the latest wave of infections is receding.
Meanwhile, Greek officials say the number of new infections is waning in most parts of the country, which has been in lockdown for three weeks. The lockdown initially had been set to end Monday but has been extended for another week.
Greece on Monday recorded 1,044 new confirmed infections — down from a record high of more than 3,000 earlier in November — and 85 new deaths.
The hardest-hit country in the Middle East, Iran, had more than 948,000 reported cases of COVID-19 and more than 47,000 recorded deaths.