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4 cases of COVID-19 at Canada Post mail processing plant in Winnipeg

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Four cases of COVID-19 have been identified in the last five days at a Canada Post mail processing facility in Winnipeg, the Crown corporation reported on Sunday.

The first case was discovered on Wednesday, Canada Post said in an emailed statement to CBC News.

The employee works at the Winnipeg mail processing plant on Wellington Avenue and was last there on Oct. 26. They weren’t symptomatic while at work.

On Thursday, Canada Post learned of two additional cases at the same plant.

“These employees were working in different sections of the facility at different times of the day,” a Canada Post spokesperson said. The employees were last there a week prior and were asymptomatic.

Another employee tested positive on Sunday, and was last in the mail processing plant on Thursday.

“We are working with public health and at this time there is no connection between the cases,” the spokesperson said, adding that thorough sanitization was done after Canada Post learned of each of the four positive tests.

Canada Post said it has been in touch with public health officials since the beginning of the pandemic and has increased cleaning, implemented physical distancing in all facilities and is providing reusable face coverings.

Canada Post has also supported contact tracing efforts in connection with these cases.

 

Source: – CBC.ca

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B.C. reports 711 new cases of COVID-19, 10 new in Island Health – CHEK

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British Columbia has reported 711 new cases of COVID-19 across the province in the last 24 hours.

Of the 711 new cases, 10 are linked to the Island Health region.

There are currently 9,050 active cases in British Columbia, while 10,957 residents remain under active public health monitoring.

After surpassing the 9,000 mark yesterday for active cases, the number decreased by 53 in today’s announcement.

Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix note that 338 are in hospital currently – an increase of 13 – with 76 people in critical care as a result of the virus (decreasing by four from Thursday).

On Friday, there were 11 additional deaths related to the virus, meaning the provincial total over the course of the pandemic has now reached 492.

B.C. has now reported 134 deaths from the virus over the past nine days, meaning that 27 per cent of the total number of deaths in B.C. has occurred in that span.

Since Thursday’s numbers, there have been 143 new cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 427 in the Fraser Health region, 10 in the Island Health region, 81 in the Interior Health region, 50 in the Northern Health region and no new cases of people who reside outside of Canada.

As of Friday, the total number of cases in British Columbia over the course of the pandemic has been 36,132.

Dr. Henry noted that there have two new health-care facility outbreaks at Peace Arch Hospital Foundation Lodge and at Richmond Hospital, while the outbreak at Youville Residence has been declared over.

There are now 56 active outbreaks in long-term care and assisted living and nine in acute care facilities.

“We continue to face a significant surge in community transmission and new cases of COVID-19, which means following the provincial health officer’s (PHO) orders and using all our layers of protection is necessary for every person in our province right now,” reads a joint statement from Dr. Henry and Dix, sent out Friday.

Dr. Henry and Minister Dix are encouraging British Columbians to still be festive with the holiday season in full swing, but only with immediate household members at this time.

Island Health

On Friday, Island Health said there were 183 active cases within its authority: 59 on southern Vancouver Island, 99 on central Vancouver Island and 25 on northern Vancouver Island.

Southern Vancouver Island includes the Greater Victoria region, Southern Gulf Islands and the Port Renfrew area.

Central Vancouver Island includes the Cowichan Valley, Duncan, Nanaimo, Parksville, Port Alberni and Tofino areas.

Northern Vancouver Island goes from the Comox Valley to Port Hardy but also includes surrounding areas like Alert Bay and Sointula.

Over the course of the pandemic, the Island Health region has reported 679 cases.

Island Health’s COVID-19 numbers on Dec. 4, 2020.

National COVID-19 landscape

Earlier today, the federal government revealed that Canada had surpassed the 400,000 case mark since the start of the pandemic.

It took only 18 days for Canada to rack up the latest 100,000 cases, marking the shortest growth period since the pandemic was first declared in March.

As of Thursday, 314,608 Canadians have recovered from COVID-19, and 12,407 have died, according to the Government of Canada website.

Other COVID-19 information

If there is a confirmed COVID-19 case in a school, public health contacts affected school community members directly. Regional health authorities also post-school notifications on their websites, providing the date and type of notification (outbreak, cluster or exposure) for impacted schools.

The Island Health school site can be found here.

Island Health’s COVID-19 data breaks down North, Central and South Island case counts and lists the number of days since any new lab-diagnosed cases. You can find the data here along with any public exposures.

According to data collected by Johns Hopkins University and Medicine, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases worldwide is more than 65.7 million. More than 1.5 million deaths have been recorded.

More to come.

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Record number in intensive care as Manitoba announces 320 new COVID-19 cases on Friday – CBC.ca

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There are now more COVID-19 patients in Manitoba’s hospitals and intensive care units than ever before, the province’s top doctor says, after a week in which the number of people in hospital with the illness went up almost every day. 

That trend continued on Friday, when Chief Provincial Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin announced 361 people hospitalized with COVID-19, up from 357 on Thursday.

The record 55 intensive care patients with COVID-19 — 43 of whom are on ventilators — make up just under half of Manitoba’s critical care patients, Shared Health Chief Nursing Officer Lanette Siragusa said at the conference.

“I cannot emphasize enough the impact that these COVID numbers are having on our staff throughout the system,” Siragusa said. “They are tired, they are fatigued, they are stressed by the changes and the intensity that is upon them.”

The province’s critical care program is now working at 161 per cent of its pre-pandemic capacity, she said.

Projections released Friday suggest sweeping restrictions in Manitoba have barely kept the province from its worst-case scenario for daily COVID-19 cases, which assumes few restrictions and poor compliance in the province.

“It’s a scary thought to think about what would happen if we didn’t have the restrictions and if Manitobans weren’t doing their part,” Siragusa said.

Manitoba also announced on Friday that another 320 people have contracted COVID-19 and nine more have died.

The province’s latest coronavirus-linked deaths include a woman in her 50s from the Interlake-Eastern health region and four people linked to care home outbreaks across Manitoba, Roussin said.

There are now 134 intensive care spaces in Manitoba after a new 14-bed COVID-19 unit was added at Winnipeg’s Health Sciences Centre Thursday night, Siragusa said.

Manitoba’s five-day test positivity rate — a rolling average of the COVID-19 tests that come back positive — is up slightly to 13.4 per cent, Roussin said. In Winnipeg, that rate dipped to 14. 6 per cent.

Two previously announced COVID-19 cases were removed from the province’s totals because of a data correction, Roussin said, bringing Manitoba’s total case tally to 18,069.

Of those, 8,535 are considered recovered from COVID-19, while 9,172 are still deemed active, though Roussin has previously said that number is inflated because of a data entry backlog.

An outbreak of COVID-19 has been declared at the Brandon Correctional Centre, which has been moved to the critical red level on the pandemic response system, Roussin said.

The deaths announced Friday, which bring the province’s total to 362, include two women in their 90s linked to Brandon’s Fairview Personal Care Home, Roussin said. The most recent deaths also include two other people linked to outbreaks in Winnipeg: a woman in her 80s linked to Lions Manor Senior Housing and a man in his 90s linked to Holy Family Home.

The deaths of two Winnipeg men (in their 60s and 90s) and two people in the Southern Health region (a man in his 70s and a woman in her 80s) were also announced Friday.

Most of the cases announced Friday (200) are in the Winnipeg health region, with another 54 in the Southern Health region, Roussin said. The remaining cases are spread out through the Northern Health region (30), the Prairie Mountain Health region (20) and the Interlake-Eastern health region (16).

Possible exposures to COVID-19 are listed by region on the province’s website.

There were 2,706 more COVID-19 tests done in Manitoba on Thursday, bringing the total completed in the province since early February to 365,707.

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B.C. COVID-19 vaccine plan: Who gets priority and what is the schedule? – Global News

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B.C.’s Provincial Health Officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry, said she is hoping to roll out a COVID-19 vaccine in the province in the first week of January.

Henry said Thursday there will only be enough for people in priority groups to start, including vulnerable seniors and health-care workers.

Read more:
B.C. reports 694 new COVID-19 cases and double-digit deaths for 10th consecutive day

“We are planning to be able to put vaccines into arms, and the first week of January is what we’re planning for to make sure we are absolutely ready, by then at the very least,” Henry said.

She expects there will be two vaccines available to start — the Pfizer vaccine, which is under review right now by Health Canada, and the Moderna vaccine, which is currently in the process of obtaining notice of compliance in Canada.

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Henry said it is expected that Canada will get about six million doses of the vaccine and those will be distributed across the country.






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Federal government, provinces and Canadian Armed Forces ramp up COVID-19 vaccine rollout plan


Federal government, provinces and Canadian Armed Forces ramp up COVID-19 vaccine rollout plan

The Canadian military has been brought in to help figure out how the vaccine is going to be distributed and administered and the deep freezers needed to store the vaccine are set to be plugged in and ready to use by Dec. 14.

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However, it will be up to the provinces to decide who is at the front of the line.

“Our first priority is to make sure we are protecting those who are most at risk,” Henry said Thursday, namely “our seniors and elders in our communities and long-term care homes and in hospitals, here in B.C.”

“Once we have more vaccine available, we will be making it available to all of us in B.C. And that’s when we can get to that point of managing and controlling this pandemic.”

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Read more:
Support for mandatory coronavirus vaccine keeps falling even as cases spike: Ipsos

Henry added they are expecting more vaccine doses to be available by April, 2021, and that by Sept. 2021, everyone who wants a vaccine will have received one.

“So, we expect there will be a good lot of people who will be immunized by the summer and through the fall next year, but by the end of the year, anybody who wants vaccine in B.C. and in Canada should have it available to them and should be immunized,” Henry said.

More details on the rollout plan in B.C. are expected to be released next week.


Click to play video 'British Columbians divided over mandatory vaccinations'



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British Columbians divided over mandatory vaccinations


British Columbians divided over mandatory vaccinations

It seems British Columbians are still divided at this time on whether or not they will get the vaccine when it becomes available.

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Henry said Wednesday the province does not have a mandatory vaccine program and health officials do not expect COVID-19 immunizations to be mandatory.

Last week, polling done exclusively by Ipsos for Global News showed a drop in support for a mandatory vaccine since the beginning of the month, when it stood at 61 per cent.

That support now stands at 59 per cent, a total drop of 13 percentage points since May 2020.

Read more:
A coronavirus vaccine is almost ready. But will you take it?

As well, even though 59 per cent said they would support mandatory vaccination, more than 70 per cent also said they feel nervous about taking a vaccine that was created and rolled out so quickly.

Sixty-nine per cent cited the potential for long-term effects as a major concern.


Click to play video 'Tackling vaccine hesitancy amid fight to end COVID-19'



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Tackling vaccine hesitancy amid fight to end COVID-19


Tackling vaccine hesitancy amid fight to end COVID-19

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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