The latest developments on COVID-19 in Canada

By Canadian Press

The latest news on the COVID-19 global pandemic (all times Eastern):

6:20 p.m.

British Columbia will restart its economy in mid-May with health services, retail outlets, salons and others being allowed to resume at least partial operations.

All of the government’s reopening plans will require organizations and businesses to develop plans that follow provincial guidelines to control the spread of COVID-19.

Hotels, resorts and parks will open in June, with some entertainment venues opening again in July, but not large concerts.

A mix of online and classroom post-secondary education is planned for September, along with classes returning for students in kindergarten to Grade 12.

Conventions, large concerts, international tourism and professional sports with a live audience will not be allowed to resume until either a vaccine is widely available, community immunity has been reached, or effective treatment can be provided for the disease.

6:20 p.m.

Alberta is reporting 70 new cases of COVID-19 in the province.

The government also says there have been six additional deaths, bringing its total fatalities to 112.

Alberta’s total number of cases is now at 5,963.

The province says 3,552 people have recovered from the illness.

5:30 p.m.

British Columbia has announced three more deaths and 23 new cases of COVID-19.

The news comes on the same day the provincial government will reveal plans on how it will reopen the economy.

There have been 124 deaths in the province, and 2,255 people have been diagnosed with the virus.

To date, 1,494 people have recovered from COVID-19 in B.C..

A joint statement from Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says new outbreaks have emerged this week and without continued vigilance, hot spots will quickly become an issue.

3:50 p.m.

Saskatchewan health officials are reporting nearly all of the 25 newest COVID-19 infections come from La Loche, a village in the far north dealing with an outbreak.

The cases in La Loche have been driving up provincial numbers, with Premier Scott Moe saying they can be expected to increase in the region as health workers aggressively test for the virus.

So far 312 people in the province have recovered from COVID-19 and six have died. Thirteen others are in hospital.

The Saskatchewan Health Authority announced a new northern outbreak at the Meadow Lake Hospital after one staff member tested positive for the virus, which officials believe was contracted through community transmission.

2:40 p.m.

The Manitoba government is reporting two new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total to 284.

Eleven of the cases are probable. 

The two additional cases are from a cluster linked to a workplace in western Manitoba, where the number has risen to seven.

Health officials will not identify the workplace but say it is not connected to health care or food supply and does not have significant interaction with the public.

2 p.m.

New Brunswick is reporting one new case of COVID-19, raising the provincial total to 120 cases.

The latest case is someone in their 20s in the Saint John area who had been in contact with a positive case in Ontario.

Dr. Jennifer Russell, the chief medical officer of health, says the New Brunswick resident was already self-isolating when they tested positive.

On Tuesday, Russell said a person who tested positive had flown into Moncton, N.B., on April 27 on a WestJet flight.

However, Russell says it has now been learned that the person had recovered from COVID-19 in Alberta before flying to New Brunswick. She says no notice should have been issued about that passenger.

No cases are in hospital in New Brunswick and 118 cases are considered recovered.

12:25 p.m.

Canada’s chief public health officer says a COVID-19 outbreak gripping the northern Saskatchewan community of La Loche is an area of concern.

Dr. Theresa Tam says not only is the region remote, but there’s Indigenous communities located nearby.

Health officials in Saskatchewan say the virus arrived in the Dene village 600 kilometres northwest of Saskatoon last month via travel from a work camp in northern Alberta.

It has since spread through the community, leading to the death of two people in long-term care homes and making the far north the region in the province with the most active cases.

1:20 p.m.

Quebec is reporting an additional 112 deaths from COVID-19, bringing the provincial total to 2,510.

The total number of cases has risen to 34,327, an increase of 910 from the previous day.

Of those cases, 8,284 are classified as recovered. There are 1,840 people in hospital, including 213 in intensive care.

Deputy premier Genevieve Guilbault announced a $31-million government action plan to combat mental health impacts of the pandemic.

12:55 p.m.

Prince Edward Island is reporting no cases of COVID-19 Wednesday.

Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Heather Morrison, says 26 of the 27 cases on the Island are now considered recovered.

Morrison says there have been 250 complaints about people not following public health orders, resulting in 93 warnings and 16 charges.

12:45 p.m. 

Newfoundland and Labrador is reporting no new cases of COVID-19.

The province has confirmed 259 cases of the illness and 244 people have recovered.

Four people are in the hospital and two are in intensive care.

11:55 a.m.

Senior Liberal cabinet minister Jean-Yves Duclos says members of the Canadian Armed Forces have now been deployed to 13 long term care facilities, most in and around Montreal.  

Duclos, who is the president of the Treasury Board, says altogether about 1,000 members of the Forces will be deployed to assist, and that seven other sites have been identified for possible assistance from the CAF.

He says further information on where they are going will be released by the military and Quebec government.

The military had earlier said 24,000 personnel were being placed on standby to assist in COVID-19 relief efforts.

11:45 a.m.

The chief public health officer has acknowledged that the number of deaths as a result of COVID-19 in Canada has now exceeded the national projections for potentially 3,883 deaths by May 5.

Just over 4,100 people have died in Canada to date.

Tam says the increased number of deaths is due to the tragic fact that those who were infected weeks ago are now coming to the end stages of COVID-19, and are passing away, most often those in long-term care facilities.  

But Dr. Theresa Tam points out that the epidemic still appears to be slowing down and that the doubling time for infections is now at about 20 days.

11:25 a.m.

Nova Scotia is reporting seven new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total to 998 confirmed cases.

No new deaths were reported today leaving the province’s total at 41.

To date, the province has registered 31,541 negative test results.

Health officials say five people are currently in hospital with two of those patients in intensive care, while 661 people have now recovered.

11:10 am.

The country’s chief public health officer says to date, over 970,000 people have been tested for COVID-19 in Canada.

Dr. Theresa Tam says about six per cent of those tests were positive.

The number of tests being carried out in Canada are of increased importance as provinces begin to slowly reopen their economies in tandem with increased COVID-19 surveillance.

10:40 a.m.

Ontario is reporting 412 new cases of COVID-19 and 68 new deaths.

That brings the province to a total of 18,722 cases, including 1,429 deaths and 13,222 resolved cases.

The province had said it would be doing 16,000 tests a day by now, but fewer than 13,000 tests were completed during the previous day, when Premier Doug Ford was blaming half of Ontario’s regional medical officers of health for low testing rates.


The Canadian Press

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