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Canada shatters record for new coronavirus cases as new travel rules are announced – Global News

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Another 7,471 cases of the novel coronavirus have been detected in Canada, marking the highest single-day increase since the pandemic began.

The new cases bring the country’s total number of infections to 572,525.

More than 8,000 new cases were reported on December 26, however, several provinces reported cases detected over 48 hours, because of the Christmas holiday.

Provincial health authorities also confirmed 94 more people have died, pushing Canada’s death toll to 15,472.

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484,583″ readability=”37.880794701987″>However, since the pandemic started, 484,583 people have recovered from COVID-19 infections, and 18,332,176 tests for the virus have been administered.

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Canada to require all arriving air passengers to show negative COVID-19 test

The new cases and deaths come as the federal government announced Canada will now require all air passengers to obtain a negative COVID-19 test three days before arriving in the country.

The new rules are expected to come into effect in the next few days.

“We strongly advise against travel unless absolutely necessary,” Public Safety Minister Bill Blair told reporters at a news conference in Ottawa on Wednesday.

“If you must travel, understand that upon your return, you must follow guidelines and quarantine for 14 days,” he said. “It’s not just the right thing to do — it’s the law. And if you don’t, it can result in serious consequences.”

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Coronavirus: Airline passengers now required to show negative test results

In a series of tweets Wednesday afternoon, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam, said while Canadians can be “hopeful heading into 2021 as vaccines are being administered, we must remember that until they are more widely available, following proven #PublicHealth measures is key to #SlowtheSpread.”

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Tam said the country remains on a “trajectory for resurgence” adding that COVID-19 infections rates “remain very high in many areas.”

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She said this means we must celebrate New Year’s Eve “differently and resolve to carry on with effective public health practices” in the new year.

Thousands of new cases in the provinces

In Ontario, a record 2,923 new cases of the virus were detected, and provincial health authorities said another 19 people have died.

To date, Ontario has seen 178,831 infections and 4,474 fatalities related to COVID-19. 

Meanwhile, in Quebec, 2,511 new cases were detected, marking the highest single-day increase since the pandemic began.

The new cases bring the province’s total case load to 199,822. Forty-one more fatalities mean a total of 8,165 people have died in Quebec after testing positive for the virus.

Read more:
Could Moderna be authorized as a one-shot vaccine? Here’s what we know

Saskatchewan reported 138 new cases of the coronavirus, and three more deaths.

So far, the province has seen 15,160 infections and fatalities.

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Health officials in Manitoba said 130 new cases have been detected, and two more people have died, bringing the total number of infections and fatalities to 24513 and 661 respectively. 

Four new cases were detected in Atlantic Canada on Wednesday.

Nova Scotia added three new cases, while New Brunswick saw one new infection, bringing the total number of cases in the provinces to 1,483 and 946 respectively.


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Coronavirus: Airline passengers now required to show negative test results

Newfoundland and Labrador did not report any new infections, meaning its case load remained at 390.

Prince Edward Island did not release any new COVID-19 data on Wednesday, however the latest numbers issued on Dec. 29 said the province has seen 96 cases of COVID-19, 90 of which are considered to be resolved.

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None of the Maritime provinces, or Newfoundland and Labrador reported any new fatalities associated with the virus on Wednesday.

Alberta added 1,287 new infections and health authorities confirmed 18 more deaths have occurred.

Since the pandemic began, the province has seen 100,428 cases and 1,046 people have died after falling ill. 

In British Columbia, 485 new cases were detected, five of which are considered epidemiologically-linked meaning they have not yet been confirmed by a laboratory.

Eleven new deaths mean 893 people have died in B.C. since the pandemic began.

The new cases bring the total confirmed number of infections to 50,843, along with an additional 457 epidemiologically-linked cases.

No new cases in the territories

The Yukon did not report any new cases or fatalities. To date, the territory has seen 60 cases — 59 of which are considered to be resolved — and one death related to COVID-19.

Read more:
Canada still awaiting data from AstraZeneca as U.K. approves new coronavirus vaccine

Nunavut did not report any new cases or deaths on Wednesday, either, meaning the territory’s case count and death toll remained at 266 and one, respectively.

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The Northwest Territories has not reported a new case of the novel coronavirus since Dec. 18.

To date, 24 people in the territory have contracted the virus, but all have since recovered.

Global deaths top 1.8 million

Since the virus was first detected in Wuhan, China late last year, it has infected 82,510,560 people around the world, according to a tally from Johns Hopkins University.

By 7 p.m. ET, the virus had claimed 1,800,400 lives globally.


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Coronavirus: Canada hasn’t identified any cases of new coronavirus variant seen in U.K., Dr. Tam says


Coronavirus: Canada hasn’t identified any cases of new coronavirus variant seen in U.K., Dr. Tam says – Dec 22, 2020

The United States remained the viral epicentre with over 19.6 million confirmed cases and more than 341,300 deaths.

India has reported the second-highest number of infections, with over 10.2 million cases, and over 148,400 fatalities.

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Too soon to know if Canada's COVID-19 case decline will continue, Tam says – CTV News

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MONTREAL —
Canada’s chief public health officer says it’s still too soon to know whether the recent downward trend in new COVID-19 cases will continue.

Dr. Theresa Tam says there’s been an improvement in the COVID-19 numbers in B.C., Alberta, Ontario and Quebec but the disease is regaining steam elsewhere.

She says it appears local health measures may be starting to pay off, but it’s not clear whether they’re strong and broad enough to continue to sustain progress.

Some long-standing virus hot spots have made headway in lowering the number of new cases in recent weeks, but are still fighting outbreaks and flare-ups as they race to vaccinate vulnerable communities.

The federal public safety minister announced today that the Canadian Armed Forces will support vaccine efforts in 32 First Nations communities in northern Ontario.

Quebec, meanwhile, reported a fifth straight decline in the number of hospitalizations as the health minister urged citizens to keep following health measures.

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Garneau won't rule out invoking Emergencies Act to limit pandemic travel – CBC.ca

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Foreign Affairs Minister Marc Garneau says the federal government won’t rule out invoking the federal Emergencies Act to limit travel as parts of the country continue to experience high infection rates of COVID-19.

“We are looking at all potential actions to make sure that we can achieve our aims. The Emergencies Act is something you don’t consider lightly,” Garneau said in a Sunday interview on Rosemary Barton Live. “But we are first and foremost concerned about the health and safety of Canadians. And if we can do that in a way that we have the regulatory power to do it, we will do it.”

The Emergencies Act would give cabinet the power to regulate or prohibit travel “to, from or within any specified area, where necessary for the protection of the health or safety of individuals.”

On Friday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau urged Canadians to rethink all travel plans inside and outside Canada’s borders, particularly as March break approaches.

“People should not be planning non-essential travel or vacation travel outside of the country, particularly because, as I said a few days ago, we could be bringing in new measures that significantly impede your ability to return to Canada at any given moment without warning,” Trudeau cautioned. 

“Last night I had a long conversation with the premiers about a number of different options that we could possibly exercise to further limit travel and to keep Canadians safe, and we will have more to say on those in the coming days.”

When asked by CBC’s Chief Political Correspondent Rosemary Barton when such plans would be announced, Garneau said the measures are “in very active discussion.”

“I’m not going to predict when or what, but I can tell you that we are very seized with it in our government.”

Foreign Affairs Minister Marc Garneau says all options are on the table when it comes to implementing stronger measures to restrict travel during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press)

U.S. moves to strengthen land border measures

The minister also said Canada is looking at implementing COVID-19 testing along the Canada-U.S. land border as the United States moves to strengthen safety measures at land ports of entry.

“It would be easier to do … if we have quick tests that can be done because it’s a little bit more challenging to do testing at the border. But it’s something that we’re looking at very seriously,” Garneau said.

“As quick tests come along, that makes a big difference because there are challenges with respect to … certain land border points being very congested. And meanwhile, there’s a huge amount of traffic flow that has to keep going.”

U.S. President Joe Biden signs a series of orders in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, D.C., after his inauguration on Wednesday. One executive order in the country’s national pandemic response strategy includes potential COVID-19 safety measures imposed along the Canada-U.S. border. (Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images)

According to an executive order within the U.S. government’s national pandemic response strategy, top officials have been ordered to “commence diplomatic outreach to the governments of Canada and Mexico regarding public health protocols for land ports of entry.”

Within 14 days of the date of the order, officials must submit a plan to President Joe Biden to put appropriate public health measures in place.

“We will engage in a very serious way with the U.S. administration on how best to deal with land borders,” Garneau said.

The Canada-U.S. border remains closed to non-essential travel until Feb. 21.

Currently, travellers over the age of five returning to Canada by air must produce proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken no longer than 72 hours before boarding a flight.

Biden open to Canadian input on ‘Buy American’ concerns

Aside from implementing a new approach to tackling the COVID-19 pandemic, an executive order is expected Monday on Biden’s “Buy American” plans, fulfilling his campaign promise to purchase, produce and develop made-in-America goods.

“Obviously, if we see that there can be cases where there is damage done to our trade because of Buy America policy, we will speak up,” Garneau said. “President Biden has indicated that he is open to hearing from us whenever we feel concerned.”

Trudeau has already expressed his disappointment in Biden’s decision to revoke the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline, with many now turning to Buy American provisions as another potential obstacle in the bilateral relationship between the two countries.

“Less than an hour after the end of the inauguration ceremony, we were in touch with top-level advisers in the White House and discussed many things,” Canada’s ambassador to the U.S., Kirsten Hillman, told CBC Radio’s The House this week. “Among them was Buy America.”

Garneau also said that he plans to speak with Antony Blinken — Biden’s nominee for secretary of state and Garneau’s U.S. counterpart — very soon.

“I’m really looking forward to talking to Secretary Blinken and carrying on the messages … between our prime minister and the president,” he said.

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Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Sunday – CBC.ca

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The latest:

Canada’s chief public health officer says the country is in a “critical” stage of the COVID-19 pandemic and is urging Canadians not to let up.

“At this stage of the pandemic, many of us are experiencing mental fatigue and exhaustion, which is certainly normal and expected,” Dr. Theresa Tam said in a statement on Sunday.

“The past year has been challenging and a lot has been asked of Canadians — to stay home, wear a mask, limit gatherings and adopt new ways of living and working, among others.”

Tam compared the pandemic to a marathon and said Canada is at “a critical point in the race.”

“We are partway through, but with the current momentum of the epidemic and continued high rates of infection in many areas of the country, now is the time to strengthen our resolve, regroup and make sure that we have the stamina to keep our pace and make it across the finish line,” she said.

Tam also continued to urge Canadians to follow public health guidelines on wearing masks, physical distancing and frequent handwashing, saying they play a vital role in curbing the spread of more transmissible coronavirus variants.

“With vaccines rolling out in Canada and across the world, I am hopeful that the finish line will soon be in sight,” Tam said. “Together we can win this race.”

Meanwhile, Foreign Affairs Minister Marc Garneau says the federal government won’t rule out invoking the federal Emergencies Act to limit travel.

“We are looking at all potential actions to make sure that we can achieve our aims. The Emergencies Act is something you don’t consider lightly,” Garneau said in a Sunday interview on Rosemary Barton Live.

“But we are first and foremost concerned about the health and safety of Canadians. And if we can do that in a way that we have the regulatory power to do it, we will do it.”

WATCH | Garneau says not ruling out using Emergencies Act to limit travel:

Foreign Affairs Minister Marc Garneau says the federal government is actively discussing further measures to limit travel as COVID-19 cases continue to rise. 9:30

The Emergencies Act would give cabinet the power to regulate or prohibit travel “to, from or within any specified area, where necessary for the protection of the health or safety of individuals.”

On Friday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau urged Canadians to rethink all travel plans inside and outside Canada’s borders, particularly as March break approaches.


What’s happening across Canada

As of 1:45 p.m. ET on Sunday, Canada had reported 746,660 cases of COVID-19, with 63,793 cases considered active. A CBC News tally of deaths stood at 19,067.

Saskatchewan reported 260 new COVID-19 cases and three more deaths on Sunday.

Manitoba announced 222 new cases and two additional deaths. More than half of the new cases — 116 — are in the province’s northern region, which was excluded from Saturday’s easing of some strict pandemic restrictions.

Ontario registered 2,417 new cases and 50 more deaths. Meanwhile, a teenager who died of COVID-19 has been identified by the long-term care home near London, Ont., where he worked as Yassin Dabeh. 

Quebec reported 1,457 new cases and 41 more deaths.

WATCH | Montreal woman ‘shocked’ after mother received doses of 2 different vaccines:

Two weeks after receiving the Moderna vaccine, Antonietta Pollice was given a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, said her daughter, Patrizia Di Biase. Pollice, who has dementia, did not understand what vaccine she was receiving, Di Biase said. 2:02

New Brunswick is reporting 20 new cases. The figure comes a day after the Edmundston region went into full lockdown.

Nova Scotia added one new case, but its active caseload dipped as it also announced two recoveries. Starting Monday, the province will ease some restrictions on sports and the performing arts.

Newfoundland and Labrador saw no new cases.

In Prince Edward Island, more people were allowed in churches and other places of worship after the province eased some measures this weekend.

Nunavut says it will tighten restrictions in Arviat after the territory announced 13 new infections in the hard-hit community.

In Yukon, the White River First Nation in Beaver Creek is calling for a harsher penalty against two Vancouver residents who broke COVID-19 rules and got vaccinated in the community.


What’s happening around the world

As of Sunday, more than 98.9 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported worldwide, with more than 54.6 million of the cases considered resolved or recovered, according to the coronavirus tracking tool maintained by Johns Hopkins University. The global death toll stood at more than 2.1 million.

In Africa, four Zimbabwean cabinet ministers have died of COVID-19 — three within the past two weeks — highlighting a resurgence of the disease in the country.

Pallbearers carry the coffin of government minister Ellen Gwaradzimba in Harare, Zimbabwe, on Jan. 21. Gwaradzimba is among four cabinet ministers to have died of COVID-19. (Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi/The Associated Press)

In Europe, the French government says it may impose a third lockdown in the coming days if an existing 12-hour-a-day curfew doesn’t significantly slow virus infections.

In Asia-Pacific, New Zealand has reported its first coronavirus case outside of a quarantine facility in more than two months, although there was no immediate evidence the virus was spreading in the community.

In the Americas, the U.S. has surpassed 25 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic began. The country accounts for roughly one of every four cases reported worldwide and one of every five deaths.

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