The number of COVID-19 cases continues to soar across Canada, with Ontario reaching a new one-day high and Quebec breaking past 1,000 daily infections for the fourth straight day.
The national tally currently stands at more than 258,000, with nearly half in Quebec and about a third from Ontario.
Daily counts spiked above 1,100 new infections in Ontario and included 11 new deaths linked to the novel coronavirus.
Meanwhile, Quebec is reporting more than 1,200 new cases and 29 more deaths linked to the virus, with the Health Department saying 11 of those deaths came in the past 24 hours.
Troubling spikes have also been seen on the Prairies and West Coast in recent days.
British Columbia’s provincial health officer and health minister are set to hold a rare weekend news conference today later this afternoon.
B.C. reported 589 new COVID-19 cases on Friday, up from 425 on Thursday and 334 a day earlier.
Concern is also high in Manitoba, where the province recorded 271 new cases of the virus and seven new associated deaths. Winnipeg moved into the province’s red zone earlier this week and the southern health region is set to go red on Monday.
A new colour-coded assessment system has also launched in Ontario, where hot spots included Toronto, with 336 new infections, and Peel Region, with 258 new cases. Ottawa reported 78 new cases while Hamilton reported 55.
Only Peel Region, which has seen rising cases in recent weeks, was deemed a red zone, while other hot spots such as York Region and Ottawa were labelled orange.
In Quebec, Premier Francois Legault urged residents Saturday to maintain efforts to keep COVID-19 at bay this winter. In an open letter, Legault thanked Quebecers for showing solidarity and expressed hope that grandparents will be able to see their grandchildren at Christmas.
Quebec officials have said they are especially concerned about Saguenay, north of Quebec City, and Lanaudiere, north of Montreal — regions Legault has dubbed “the worst” in Quebec on a per-capita basis.
On Saturday, Quebec’s hospitalizations decreased by 16 to reach 523, while one more patient was listed in intensive care for a total of 78.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 7, 2020.
The Canadian Press