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Canada's first case of H1N2 influenza confirmed in central Alberta – Edmonton Journal

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Canada’s first case of H1N2 influenza has been confirmed in central Alberta.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, and Dr. Keith Lehman, the chief provincial veterinarian, issued a statement Wednesday morning confirming a person tested positive for the virus in mid-October but said it appears to be one isolated case and there is no increased risk to Albertans at this time.

H1N2 influenza is known to occur in swine herds around the world, according to the Alberta government website, but is not a food-borne illness associated with eating pork.

“The virus was detected in mid-October after an Alberta patient sought medical care with influenza-like symptoms. The patient experienced mild symptoms, was tested and then quickly recovered. There is no evidence at this time that the virus has spread further,” the statement says.

“Health officials, in conjunction with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, have launched a public health investigation to determine the source of the virus and to verify that no spread occurred. The Government of Alberta will continue working closely with Alberta Health Services, the Public Health Agency of Canada and other partners across Canada.”

The case is the first detected in Canada and only the 27th globally since 2005, Hinshaw and Lehman said.

People in central Alberta will be offered influenza testing if they present for COVID-19 testing at an AHS assessment centre, the statement says.

ajoannou@postmedia.com

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All sheriffs at Surrey courthouse tested for COVID-19 after 20 days of possible exposure – CTV News Vancouver

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VANCOUVER —
Fraser Health has implemented ‘widespread’ testing of Surrey Courthouse staff, including all sheriffs, after people connected to the worksite tested positive for COVID-19, according to the B.C. Ministry of the Attorney General.

The ministry also reports that exposures to COVID-19 at the courthouse took place over a period of twenty days, but says the health authority has found no evidence transmission is happening at the worksite.

Details of the testing and response comes from a news statement released late Friday night by the Ministry of the Attorney General, after the courthouse staff’s union confirmed eight cases of COVID-19 among people connected to the court. The union also said an additional 25 people are self-isolating due to exposure, twenty-three of whom are sheriffs.

“On Nov. 26, 2020, Fraser Health provided widespread testing at the Surrey Courthouse, including all sheriffs,” reads the statement from the Attorney General’s office.

Despite the numerous cases, Fraser Health has not declared the site an “outbreak.”

“We understand that this has been a stressful situation for the staff,” continues the statement.

“Recently, Fraser Health notified Court Services Branch staff at the Surrey Courthouse that they may have been exposed to COVID-19 from Nov. 5, 2020 to Nov. 25, 2020.”

The ministry says that all close contacts have been directly notified and told to self-isolate and that “self-monitoring letters have been issued to all staff in the BC Sheriff Service department at the Surrey Courthouse.”

The Fraser Health region has been the hardest hit by COVID-19 infections, and despite 8 cases among staff and 20 days of possible COVID-19 exposure at the courhouse, the ministry says the health authority reports that there are no indications that transmission is happening at the courthouse.

“COVID-19 cases are occurring in the broader community. According to Fraser Health, there is no evidence that there is transmission occurring at the work site.”

The court is continuing to operate and has many COVID-19 precautions in place.

This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.

Correction:

Nov. 28, 2020: This story has been updated from a previous version that incorrectly identified the Fraser Health Authority of releasing the referenced statement. It has been updated to reflect the correct author of the statement, which is the B.C. Ministry of the Attorney General.

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Deaths due to coronavirus in Quebec surpass 7,000 | CTV News – CTV News Montreal

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MONTREAL —
Quebec had a double dose of bad news in its battle against the COVID-19 pandemic Saturday.

The province broke its record for the number of new cases in a 24-hour period when officials reported 1,480 new cases. The prior record was set Thursday when 1,464 new cases were reported.

The total number of deaths due to the disease reached a grim milestone as well, as they surpassed 7,000 to start the weekend.

The province reported 37 new deaths bringing the total number of people who have died due to the novel coronavirus to 7,021.

Quebec reported that 10 of those deaths occurred in the past 24 hours, 23 were reported between Nov. 21 and Nov. 26, two occurred before Nov. 21 and two occurred at an unknown date.

The total number of positive COVID-19 cases in the province since the start of the pandemic is now 139,643.

The Quebec Institute of Public health reports that there are now 11,716 active cases, and that 1,179 more people have recovered from the disease, bringing that total to 120,906.

The number of hospitalizations increased by nine Saturday, and there are now 678 people being treated in the province’s hospitals for COVID-19. Of those, 93 are in the intensive care ward, an increase of three.

Health-care professionals analyzed 29,652 samples on Nov. 26. (Quebec releases its testing data from two days prior to its daily updates).

REGIONAL DATA

The Island of Montreal also set a grim milestone Saturday, surpassing 50,000 positive cases.

Montreal reported 429 new cases, and 50,319 people have now tested positive for the novel coronavirus on the island since the start of the pandemic. 

Other regions with triple-digit increases in cases were Monteregie with 215 new (19,800 total), Quebec City with 128 new cases (11,449 total), Lanaudiere with 120 new cases (11,077 total), Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean with 117 new cases (4,988 total), and Mauricie-et-Centre-du-Quebec with 107 new cases (6,825 total).

Montreal also reported the highest increase in deaths due to the disease Saturday.

Eight deaths were reported in Montreal (3,618 total); seven in Quebec City (433 total); six in Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean (122 total); four in Monteregie (856 total); three in Mauricie-et-Centre-du-Quebec (266 total), and Lanaudiere (324 total); two in the Eastern Townships (62 total), and the Laurentians (336 total); and one death was reported in Bas-Saint-Laurent (18 total), and Outaouais (80 total).

ACROSS CANADA

As of noon EST on Saturday, there are 362,362 confirmed COVID-19 cases across Canada. 

The following is a regional breakdown of cases and deaths:

  • Quebec: 139,643 confirmed (including 7,021 deaths, 120,906 resolved)
  • Ontario: 113,038 confirmed (including 3,624 deaths, 95,876 resolved)
  • Alberta: 53,105 confirmed (including 519 deaths, 38,369 resolved)
  • British Columbia: 30,884 confirmed (including 395 deaths, 21,304 resolved)
  • Manitoba: 15,632 confirmed (including 280 deaths, 6,487 resolved)
  • Saskatchewan: 7,691 confirmed (including 44 deaths, 4,384 resolved)
  • Nova Scotia: 1,257 confirmed (including 65 deaths, 1,078 resolved)
  • New Brunswick: 481 confirmed (including 7 deaths, 363 resolved)
  • Newfoundland and Labrador: 331 confirmed (including 4 deaths, 296 resolved)
  • Nunavut: 159 confirmed (including 8 resolved)
  • Prince Edward Island: 70 confirmed (including 68 resolved)
  • Yukon: 42 confirmed (including 1 death, 29 resolved)
  • Northwest Territories: 15 confirmed (including 15 resolved)
  • Repatriated Canadians: 13 confirmed (including 13 resolved)

Total: 362,361 (0 presumptive, 362,361 confirmed including 11,960 deaths, 289,196 resolved)

— with files from The Canadian Press.   

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Positive COVID-19 signs, winter arrives and a councillor caught texting and driving during a meeting: Top stories in Ottawa this week – CTV Edmonton

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OTTAWA —
Ottawa’s COVID-19 case numbers continue to fall, Council approves Light Rail Transit to Barrhaven and an Ottawa councillor caught texting and driving during a Zoom city committee meeting.

CTV News Ottawa looks at the top stories in Ottawa this week

As Ottawa’s COVID-19 cases and the positivity rate continue to fall, the medical officer of health says most of the credit goes to Ottawa residents.

On Oct. 14, Dr. Vera Etches told Council that Ottawa had the highest rate of COVID-19 in Ottawa, at 70 cases per 100,000 people. On Nov. 28, Ottawa’s rate per 100,000 people was 21.

“It’s really thanks to the people in Ottawa, and thanks to the employers and others who are doing their part to make it possible,” Etches told reporters, adding people have been practicing physical distancing and wearing masks.

“These are the things that actually can bring COVID down in a community.”

While Ontario set records for highest COVID-19 cases in a single day, Ottawa’s case numbers remained low this week.  There were 19 cases on Nov. 24, 23 cases on Nov. 25 and 24 cases on Nov. 26. The high for the week was 55 new cases on Friday.

Ottawa’s COVID-19 rate per 100,000 people, test positivity rate and Rt number are inching closer to the threshold for Ottawa to move into the “yellow-protect” zone, but Dr. Etches said she wants to see solid declines before Ottawa moves.

Two COVID-19 outbreaks have been declared involving social events in Ottawa.

Last weekend, Ottawa Public Health declared an outbreak linked to a social event with four cases of COVID-19.

CTV News Ottawa reached out to Ottawa Public Health (OPH) to ask when the social event was held, how many people attended the social event and if anyone was ordered to self-isolate due to the social event.

“To protect the privacy of the individuals, OPH cannot disclose additional information,” said Ottawa Public Health in a statement to CTV News Ottawa.

A second outbreak with three cases was reported during the week.

Ottawa received its first taste of winter weather this past week, with two storms moving through the region.

A storm Sunday evening and Monday delivered approximately 9 centimetres of snow, along with some rain and freezing rain. A storm on Wednesday blanketed Ottawa with approximately 10 centimetres of snow.

Environment Canada’s David Phillips tells CTV Morning Live that this week’s weather was a preview of what’s ahead for Ottawa through the winter months.

“Kind of a little fickle and fitful, hard to put a label on the winter. I think it’s not going to be memorable from a brutally cold or a balmy kind of winter, I think there will be something for everybody,” said Phillips.

“You’ll get a certain amount of snow, and you’ll get rain, you’ll get freezing rain – it will be a real mixed bag. I think it will make winter go faster when it’s very changeable and variable, but it’s hard to plan your activities based on such an up and down kind of weather scene that we see this coming winter.”

Ottawa snow

Council gave the green light to plans for a $3 billion light rail train line from Algonquin College to Barrhaven.

Councillors voted 18 to 4 to build the Barrhaven Light Rail Transit Line, including demolishing 120 homes in the Manor Village and Cheryl Gardens neighbourhoods for the route alignment.

On Tuesday, Ottawa ACORN members protested the plans outside Mayor Jim Watson’s home. On Wednesday, dozens of people rallied outside Ottawa City Hall.

On Saturday, Manor Village resident Alison Trowbridge told Newstalk 580 CFRA’s “The Goods with Dahlia Kurtz” that council’s decision created a lot of stress for her and her seven-year-old son.

“Unfortunately, he has been watching all of this happen and it’s causing him tremendous stress. That’s not stress a seven-year-old should be having,” she said. “As much as he understands, he doesn’t understand the idea of a housing a homelessness crisis but he understands the words, ‘you’re going to lose your home’ and those aren’t the things he should be worrying about as a child.”

Trowbridge says Ottawa ACORN wants the City of Ottawa to establish a rental replacement bylaw to protect tenants and ensure they have a new place to live if forced from their homes.

The city will set up a working group to find housing solutions for the tenants, including Ottawa Community Housing.

Knoxdale Station

An Ottawa councillor who was recorded on a virtual committee meeting texting and driving says he voluntarily went to Ottawa police to pay a fine.

During Tuesday’s audit committee meeting on Zoom, Osgoode Coun. George Darouze could be seen getting into a car and driving while in the meeting. The video appeared to show Darouze using his phone while driving and wearing headphones.

“(Tuesday) morning I was texting and driving. This was stupid thing to do and I should not have done this. I commit to my family and residents that this won’t happen again,” Darouze said in a statement on Facebook.

On Wednesday, Darouze said he went to the Ottawa Police Service station on Leitrim Road to give a statement, in order for officers to issue a $615 fine under the Highway Traffic Act.

“I promise that this will never happen again. I want to continue to be an advocate for Safer Roads Ottawa and work with OPS on their Leave the Phone Alone initiative, and by requesting and paying this fine, I hope I and others can learn from my experience.”

George Darouze

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