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

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The latest:

  • Why Ontario hospitals are full to bursting, despite few COVID-19 patients.
  • New record of 6 deaths reported in a day in Manitoba, as COVID-19 tally rises by 312.
  • WHO chief self-quarantining after contact tests positive for COVID-19.
  • As COVID-19 sweeps across Russia, hospitals buckle under the strain.
  • Have a coronavirus question or news tip for CBC News? Email us at COVID@cbc.ca.

The U.S. government’s top infectious diseases expert is cautioning that the country will have to deal with “a whole lot of hurt” in the weeks ahead due to surging coronavirus cases.

Dr. Anthony Fauci’s comments to the Washington Post take issue with President Donald Trump’s frequent assertion that the nation is “rounding the turn” on the virus.  

Fauci said the U.S. “could not possibly be positioned more poorly” to stem rising cases as more people gather indoors during the colder fall and winter months. He said the U.S. will need to make an “abrupt change” in public health precautions.

Speaking of the risks, Fauci said he believes Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden “is taking it seriously from a public health perspective,” while Trump is “looking at it from a different perspective.” Fauci, who’s on the White House coronavirus task force, said that perspective is “the economy and reopening the country.”

White House spokesperson Judd Deere said in response that Trump always puts people’s well-being first and Deere charged that Fauci has decided “to play politics” right before Tuesday’s election. Fauci has said in his decades of public service he’s never publicly endorsed any political candidate.

WATCH | Trump supporters chant ‘Fire Fauci’ at Florida rally:

U.S. President Donald Trump’s supporters began chanting ‘Fire Fauci,’ in reference to the country’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, during a rally in Opa-locka, Fla.   0:26

The president touched on Fauci’s service in the early morning hours on Monday as he spoke at a campaign rally in Florida. Trump expressed frustration that the surging cases of the virus that has killed more than 231,000 people in the U.S. this year remains prominent in the news, sparking chants of “Fire Fauci” from his supporters.

“Don’t tell anybody but let me wait until a little bit after the election,” Trump replied to thousands of supporters early Monday, adding he appreciated their “advice.”


What’s happening around the world

The head of the World Health Organization said he has been identified as a contact of a person who tested positive for COVID-19 and will self-quarantine. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus wrote on Twitter late Sunday that he is “well and without symptoms” but will self-quarantine in “coming days, in line with WHO protocols, and work from home.”

The WHO director general has been at the forefront of the global response to the coronavirus pandemic, which has infected at least 46.5 million people and led to more than 1.2 million deaths, according to a count of confirmed cases by Johns Hopkins University.

Tables are wrapped in plastic as restaurants and bars go under the COVID-19 lockdown in Frankfurt, Germany on Sunday. (Kai Pfaffenbach/Reuters)

In Europe, several countries are tightening restrictions this week, starting with a partial shutdown Monday in Germany, as authorities across the continent scramble to slow a rapid rise in coronavirus infections that threatens to overwhelm their health-care systems.

Britain and Austria will follow suit later in the week, closing restaurants, bars and nonessential shops. Italy, Greece and Kosovo also announced new measures. In some places, the new rules — which vary in strictness — are prompting violent protests by people frustrated at once again having to forgo freedoms.

But in many, experts are saying they should have come weeks ago — a reflection of the increasingly difficult balance many countries are struggling to strike between controlling the virus and boosting already damaged economies.

“We are aware of the frustration, the sense of loss, the tiredness of citizens, also of the anger which is being manifested in these days, by citizens who find themselves living with new limits to their personal freedom,” said Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte, as he defended his government’s decision to order new measures.

​​​​​In the Americas, coronavirus cases continued their grim climb in the United States on Sunday, with Midwestern states experiencing record hospitalizations.

The Brazilian health minister, who is ill with COVID-19, was to stay in a military hospital overnight on Sunday, after having been discharged from a civilian facility earlier in the day.

In the Asia-Pacific region, India recorded 45,231 new infections, taking total cases there to 8.23 million.

South Korea said it will expand its mandatory mask policy to spas, wedding halls and other places as part of new physical distancing rules.

A health worker performs a swab test on a man at a mobile COVID-19 testing clinic in Kolkata last week. (Dibyangshu Sarkar/AFP/Getty Images)

In the Middle East, Iran’s daily tally of coronavirus deaths hit a record high of 434 on Sunday.

South Africa remains the hardest-hit country in Africa, with more than 726,000 cases reported since the outbreak began and more than 19,400 reported deaths.


What’s happening in Canada 

WATCH | Manitoba doctors warn of dire situation in hospitals:

Manitoba doctors have warned the government for a second time about the critical situation inside the province’s hospitals as the COVID-19 epidemic in the province gets further out of control. Renewed restrictions go into effect Monday, but some fear is it’s too little, too late. 2:06

As of early Monday morning, provinces and territories in Canada had reported a cumulative total of 236,841 confirmed or presumptive coronavirus cases. Provinces and territories listed 197,729 as recovered or resolved. A CBC News tally of deaths based on provincial reports, regional health information and CBC’s reporting stood at 10,179.

Manitoba residents are seeing new restrictions as the province tries to slow the spread of COVID-19 after a record number of new cases over the weekend. The Winnipeg area, now under the province’s highest alert level, has several new temporary restrictions around gathering size and business capacity. 

The province reported 312 new COVID-19 case on Sunday, bringing the total number of cases reported in the province since the novel coronavirus emerged to 6,034. As of Sunday, there were 120 people with COVID-19 in hospital, including 18 in intensive care. The province’s test positivity rate stood at 8.9 per cent, according to the provincial COVID-19 dashboard.

Saskatchewan reported 74 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday, marking five days in a row where the number of new cases has topped 60. The province has reported 25 deaths since the pandemic began.

Health officials in British Columbia and Alberta don’t provide updated figures over the weekend. In Calgary, a hospital is facing COVID-19 outbreaks in three units. In Vancouver, people gathered in the downtown entertainment district on Saturday night to celebrate Halloween, despite warnings from public health officials to avoid large groups. 

In Ontario, the city of Brampton’s weekly test positivity rate rose to 9.6 per cent for the week ending Oct. 24, according to a Peel Health Surveillance report published on Oct. 30. This represents a 1.5 per cent increase from the previous week, when Brampton, which is northwest of Toronto, sat at 8.1 per cent positivity. This is well above the five per cent benchmark used by infectious disease experts to signal the virus is under control.

Two Quebec regions — Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Chaudière-Appalaches — are moving into Quebec’s highest state of alert for COVID-19, joining Quebec City, Montreal, Laval and several other regions labelled “red zones” by the province. 

In Atlantic Canada, Nova Scotia reported two new COVID-19 cases on Sunday. The Central Zone cases were under investigation, health officials said.  

New Brunswick reported one new COVID-19 case on Sunday, saying the person was between 30 and 39 and lived in the Fredericton region. There were no new cases reported in Newfoundland and Labrador or Prince Edward Island, which has no active cases. 

There were no new cases reported in Yukon, the Northwest Territories or Nunavut over the weekend.

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3 Nova Scotians appointed to the Order of Canada – CBC.ca

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Three Nova Scotians have been appointed to the Order of Canada, one of the country’s highest civilian honours.

They are among the 114 appointees announced Friday.

The list includes eight companions, 21 officers, one honorary member and 84 members. The full list can be found here.

“Created in 1967, the Order of Canada recognizes outstanding achievement, dedication to the community and service to the nation,” said a statement on the office of the Governor General’s website.

Appointments are made by the Governor General on the recommendation of the Advisory Council for the Order of Canada. More than 7,000 Canadians have received the honour since its inception.

Jeff Dahn of Halifax, who has led groundbreaking research on lithium-ion batteries, was appointed as an officer.

Dahn is considered a pioneer of lithium-ion battery research. (Jill English/CBC)

In 2017, he won the Gerhard Herzberg Canada Gold Medal for Science and Engineering for his work in making batteries increasingly efficient. He also won a Governor General’s Award for Innovation in 2016.

Dahn works out of a lab at Dalhousie University. He also began a five-year research partnership with Tesla In 2016.

In the statement, the Governor General’s office also commended him for “his mentorship and adroit bridging of academia and industry.”

Dahn could not be reached for comment Sunday.

‘It’s humbling’

Meanwhile, Dr. Ken Wilson and John Eyking were appointed as members.

Wilson, a plastic surgeon in the Halifax area, was appointed “for his nationally recognized expertise in reconstructive and plastic surgery, and for his volunteer work on international medical missions.”

“It’s humbling, but a very nice addition to a great career,” Wilson said of the honour.

In the mid-80s, Wilson became the first person east of Montreal to dedicate himself to doing plastic surgery for children.

“It was a very satisfying thing for me to be able to look after a lot of the children who have either had to travel, or that hadn’t had, sometimes, the attention they would’ve had otherwise,” he said.

Wilson has spent more than 30 years doing plastic and reconstructive surgery for children. (Submitted by Ken Wilson)

In the mid-90s, Wilson began working with Operation Smile, an organization that provides surgeries and dental care to children with cleft lip, cleft palate and other facial deformities. He travelled a couple times a year to do surgery in underdeveloped countries, and he estimates he went on about 46 missions.

In the late 1990s, Wilson became the chief of surgery at the IWK children’s hospital in Halifax, a position he held for more than a decade.

He stopped practising five years ago, but Wilson now works as a medical consultant for Doctors Nova Scotia and is chair of the board for Operation Smile Canada.

“It was a wonderful career,” said Wilson. “I gotta say, I’ve been very lucky over the years to have the opportunity to do what I did.”

While there is no ceremony this year due to COVID-19, Wilson was mailed his snowflake insignia, as well as a “lovely book” detailing the history of the Order of Canada and the many recipients over the years.

‘All in a day’s work’

Eyking, a farmer and entrepreneur who founded Eyking Farms, was recognized for his “personal and professional dedication to the Cape Breton community, particularly within the agriculture industry.”

Eyking, of Millville, N.S., immigrated to Canada in 1963 from the Netherlands. He started a farm, which later grew into a family operation run by him, his wife and their 10 children.

He is also an inductee of the Atlantic Agricultural Hall of Fame.

Reached by phone Sunday, Eyking, 89, was modest about his appointment. He credited his farm’s accomplishments to the work of his large family.

“For me, it was all in a day’s work and I enjoyed it,” he said.

He, too, received a parcel from the Order of Canada, and said he enjoyed the book.

“There’s quite a few Cape Bretoners in there,” he said.

The recipients will be invited to accept their insignia at a ceremony to be held at a later date.

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Ottawa extends international travel restrictions citing COVID-19 risk – CBC.ca

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The federal government has extended existing international travel restrictions to prevent the spread of COVID-19, barring entry to most travellers who are not Canadian citizens, permanent residents or people entering from the U.S. for “essential” reasons.

In a news release issued Sunday, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Bill Blair and Health Minister Patty Hajdu announced that travel restrictions on U.S. citizens and foreign nationals seeking to enter Canada from the U.S. will be extended until Dec. 21.

Similarly, restrictions on travellers arriving from other countries will be extended until Jan. 21, as will the mandatory requirement for anyone who is granted entry to self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival.

Emergency orders brought forward on Mar. 16 banned most foreign nationals from entering Canada for non-essential travel. There are a number of exceptions for immediate family members of citizens, essential workers, seasonal workers, caregivers and international students, to name a few.

By extending the expiration dates to the 21st of the month, today’s change brings the timing of the international travel restrictions in alignment with those governing the Canada-U.S. land border. Previously, international restrictions expired on the last day of each month while the Canada-U.S. border restrictions expired on the 21st.

Both have been regularly extended since March.

“The government continues to evaluate the travel restrictions and prohibitions as well as the requirement to quarantine or isolate on an ongoing basis to ensure Canadians remain healthy and safe,” the release said.

“The ability to align U.S. and international travel extension dates, as well as the mandatory isolation order, beginning on Jan. 21, 2021 will enable the government to communicate any travel extensions or changes as quickly as possible and provide certainty for Canadians, U.S. and international travelers.”

International travel restrictions on U.S. citizens and foreign nationals seeking to enter Canada from the U.S. will be extended until Dec. 21. (Rob Gurdebeke/The Canadian Press)

Exemption for amateur sports events

The release also said the government will begin accepting applications from “high-performance amateur sport organizations” seeking to hold single sport events in Canada. Applicants will need to show they have a plan to protect public health that is approved by provincial or territorial officials and the relevant local health authorities in order to be considered.

Sport Canada, which is part of the Department of Canadian Heritage, will be responsible for authorizing such events, in consultation with the Public Health Agency of Canada, the release said.

More than 1,300 professional athletes have been issued national interest exemptions, which allow those who don’t qualify under current COVID-19-related restrictions to travel to Canada, or to skip the mandatory 14-day quarantine when they arrive.

Last month, the federal government expanded the eligibility for people coming from the U.S. on compassionate grounds. Those changes governing family reunification have been broadened to include exceptions for certain extended family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents including couples who have been dating for at least a year, including their children, grandchildren, siblings and grandparents. 

Despite travel restrictions, more than five million arrivals into Canada have been allowed to skip the 14-day quarantine requirement, according to data from the Canada Border Services Agency, mainly because they’re essential workers.

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Ottawa extends international travel restrictions citing COVID-19 risk – CBC.ca

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The federal government has extended existing international travel restrictions to prevent the spread of COVID-19, barring entry to most travellers who are not Canadian citizens, permanent residents or people entering from the U.S. for “essential” reasons.

In a news release issued Sunday, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Bill Blair and Health Minister Patty Hajdu announced that travel restrictions on U.S. citizens and foreign nationals seeking to enter Canada from the U.S. will be extended until Dec. 21.

Similarly, restrictions on travellers arriving from other countries will be extended until Jan. 21, as will the mandatory requirement for anyone who is granted entry to self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival.

Emergency orders brought forward on Mar. 16 banned most foreign nationals from entering Canada for non-essential travel. There are a number of exceptions for immediate family members of citizens, essential workers, seasonal workers, caregivers and international students, to name a few.

By extending the expiration dates to the 21st of the month, today’s change brings the timing of the international travel restrictions in alignment with those governing the Canada-U.S. land border. Previously, international restrictions expired on the last day of each month while the Canada-U.S. border restrictions expired on the 21st.

Both have been regularly extended since March.

“The government continues to evaluate the travel restrictions and prohibitions as well as the requirement to quarantine or isolate on an ongoing basis to ensure Canadians remain healthy and safe,” the release said.

“The ability to align U.S. and international travel extension dates, as well as the mandatory isolation order, beginning on Jan. 21, 2021 will enable the government to communicate any travel extensions or changes as quickly as possible and provide certainty for Canadians, U.S. and international travelers.”

International travel restrictions on U.S. citizens and foreign nationals seeking to enter Canada from the U.S. will be extended until Dec. 21. (Rob Gurdebeke/The Canadian Press)

Exemption for amateur sports events

The release also said the government will begin accepting applications from “high-performance amateur sport organizations” seeking to hold single sport events in Canada. Applicants will need to show they have a plan to protect public health that is approved by provincial or territorial officials and the relevant local health authorities in order to be considered.

Sport Canada, which is part of the Department of Canadian Heritage, will be responsible for authorizing such events, in consultation with the Public Health Agency of Canada, the release said.

More than 1,300 professional athletes have been issued national interest exemptions, which allow those who don’t qualify under current COVID-19-related restrictions to travel to Canada, or to skip the mandatory 14-day quarantine when they arrive.

Last month, the federal government expanded the eligibility for people coming from the U.S. on compassionate grounds. Those changes governing family reunification have been broadened to include exceptions for certain extended family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents including couples who have been dating for at least a year, including their children, grandchildren, siblings and grandparents. 

Despite travel restrictions, more than five million arrivals into Canada have been allowed to skip the 14-day quarantine requirement, according to data from the Canada Border Services Agency, mainly because they’re essential workers.

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