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Ontario sees single-day record of 700 new COVID-19 cases as calls grow to return to Stage 2 – CBC.ca

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Ontario Premier Doug Ford called the province’s record-setting new COVID-19 case count Monday “deeply concerning,” but announced no new public health measures, despite a group of doctors and medical experts calling for a return to Stage 2. 

The province reported an additional 700 cases of coronavirus on Monday, the most on a single day since the outbreak began in late January. 

Speaking to reporters, Ford said Ontario is indeed embarking on its second wave, which will be “more complicated, more complex — it’ll be worse” than the first.

Still, asked about calls by the Ontario Hospital Association (OHA) to re-implement restrictions meant to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus, Health Minister Christine Elliott said, “We don’t want to turn back a stage unless we absolutely have to.”

As for how high the case count needs to climb to get to that point, Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. David Williams wouldn’t say. Williams suggested the province is considering “targeted” measures, but didn’t specify what measures might be under consideration, where, or at what point they might be implemented. 

WATCH | ‘We’re in the second wave,’ Ford says of COVID-19 pandemic in Ontario:

Ontario is now in the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, Premier Doug Ford and health officials said Monday. 1:21

At a news conference Wednesday afternoon, Williams reiterated the importance of wearing masks and washing hands, urging Ontarians to limit their contact with people and only attend essential gatherings — even though most businesses and establishments in the province are open.

Williams also cautioned against contact with anyone who is not taking the risk of COVID-19 or the associated public health guidance seriously.

“I would avoid contact with those people,” he said. “They may be someone you know.”

Also Monday, Williams urged the public against “nice-to-know” testing, saying the province is working to increase testing capacity. Until that happens, he insisted testing should be done on a “need-to-know” basis, meaning anyone seeking a test who does not fall into the current testing criteria should not be tested right now.

The province also announced the recruitment of 3,700 more health-care workers and caregivers, including nurses and personal support workers (PSWs), at a price tag of $52 million.

“Your province needs you right now,” Ford said, calling for more Ontarians to consider becoming health-care workers.

Monday’s count of new cases surpasses the previous high of 640, which came on April 24, when community transmission of the virus was thought to be at its peak in the province.

A majority of newly confirmed cases are concentrated in four public health units:

  • Toronto: 344
  • Peel Region: 104
  • Ottawa: 89
  • York Region: 56

Other areas with double-digit increases include:

  • Niagara Region: 20
  • Halton Region: 15
  • Hamilton: 13
  • Simcoe Muskoka: 12

Elliott said in a series of tweets that about 60 per cent of new cases today were found in people under 40 years old.

Thirty-six are “school-related,” according to the ministry, including 27 students, three staff and six people categorized as “individuals not identified.” A total of 224 of Ontario’s 4,828 publicly funded schools, or about 4.64 per cent, have reported at least one case of the illness. 

The news comes as Ontario’s labs processed around 41,111 test samples for the illness, with another 49,586 in the queue waiting to be completed. The positivity rate in today’s report is 1.7 per cent, markedly higher than on any day since the province ramped up testing significantly in June. 

More than 40,000 test samples have been processed on each of the last four days. Elliott has previously said the province hopes to reach capacity for up to 50,000 tests per day in the coming weeks.

(CBC)

The number of people in Ontario hospitals with confirmed cases of COVID-19 continues to steadily rise, and now sits at 128. Twenty-eight of those patients are being treated in intensive care, while 17 are on ventilators.

Further, data from some 40 hospitals around the province was not submitted in time to be included in today’s report, the ministry says.

Meanwhile, 44 long-term care facilities throughout the province are reporting outbreaks, a figure that has been slowly increasing in recent weeks. During the peak of COVID-19 cases in Ontario, long-term care residents accounted for about two-thirds of all deaths. 

Ontario has now seen a total of 50,531 confirmed cases of COVID-19 over the entirety of the outbreak. Of those, about 85.3 per cent are considered resolved. Another 331 were marked resolved in today’s update.

The province also recorded one new official COVID-19 death, putting its death toll at at 2,840. A CBC News count based on data from public health units, which helps avoid lag times in the provincial reporting system, puts the actual toll at 2,880.

There are currently about 5,571 confirmed, active infections of the novel coronavirus provincewide. The most active cases ever observed were 5,669 on April 23.

WATCH | Infectious disease specialist Isaac Bogoch explains if targeted restrictions will be enough to keep cases in check:

An infectious disease specialist answers questions about the COVID-19 pandemic including if targeted restrictions will be enough to keep cases down. 4:04

OHA calls for tighter restrictions

Shortly after the Ministry of Health published its daily report, the OHA released a statement calling for stricter public health measures in Toronto, the Greater Toronto Area and Ottawa.

“A return to Stage 2, with restriction on indoor dining and bars, places of worship, weddings, gyms, movie theatres and other non-essential businesses, is needed now to keep schools and prevent a further acceleration of infections,” said Anthony Dale, president and CEO of the organization. 

The OHA said it has heard from member hospitals that administrators and staff are concerned that a rise in infections will inevitably lead to higher admissions, putting unsustainable strain on resources and care.

“We’ve seen in jurisdictions around the world how acute care capacity can be easily overwhelmed if the number of positive cases rises too sharply,” the statement said.

“While Canada’s health-care system has many strengths, our capacity is limited, and we can no longer sustain a false sense of security and belief that this will not happen to us.”

Dale said the OHA understands how a return to Stage 2 in these areas could negatively impact businesses but said public health considerations must come first.

Several casinos reopen

Several Ontario casinos reopened on Monday, even as a surge in COVID-19 cases was reported in the province.

Great Canadian Gaming Corporation said it reopened 11 of its properties, including Casino Woodbine in Toronto and Casino Ajax.

Ontario allowed casinos to reopen as parts of the province moved into Stage Three of their pandemic response this summer. The province has, however, prohibited table games at the establishments.

Great Canadian Gaming said it will have a limit of 50 guests indoors at its casinos and is focused on reopening safely.


Still have questions about COVID-19? These CBC News stories will help.

Is another lockdown coming in Ontario? What do we know about the Ford government’s fall plan?

CBC Queen’s Park reporter Mike Crawley obtained a draft copy of the plan

What’s the latest on where I should get tested?

It’s confusing, but here’s an explainer complete with a flow chart

What’s the most recent guidance on mask use?

Reporter Lauren Pelley took a look at what the experts are advising

What should I do about my COVID-19 bubble?

With cases going up, even small gatherings are getting riskier

Who is getting COVID-19?

CBC News crunched the data from across Canada to get the clearest picture possible

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

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The latest:

People in British Columbia and Alberta’s two largest cities are facing tighter restrictions around some social gatherings after an uptick in COVID-19 cases.

Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said Monday that while she has often spoken about the need to “balance between minimizing the risk of COVID-19 and minimizing the risk of harms of restrictions,” the province is now “losing the balance we have been seeking.”

The temporary measure, which caps attendance at 15 for events where people will be “mixing and mingling” like parties and baby showers, applies in the Calgary and Edmonton areas.

Alberta has reported a total of 25,733 cases since the pandemic began, with 4,477 of those listed as active cases. As of Sunday, health officials reported 118 people were being treated in Alberta hospitals, with 16 of those patients in ICU beds. 

Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer in British Columbia, also placed restrictions on gatherings on Monday, with a focus on events in people’s homes. Henry said gatherings are now limited to people in an immediate household, plus their so-called “safe six” guests.

WATCH | Dr. Bonnie Henry said mask-wearing is expected in public in B.C.:

B.C.’s provincial health officer says British Columbians must wear non-medical masks in public, but stopped short of making them mandatory. 2:13

“This is a bit of a sobering weekend for us,” she said after provincial health officials reported 817 new cases since Friday.

B.C. has reported a total of 13,371 COVID-19 cases since the pandemic began, with 2,325 of the cases considered active. The most recent information from health officials said 77 people were in hospital with 26 in intensive care.


What’s happening across Canada

As of 7 a.m. ET on Tuesday, Canada had 220,213 confirmed or presumptive coronavirus cases. Provinces and territories listed 184,303 of those as recovered or resolved. A CBC News tally of deaths based on provincial reports, regional health information and CBC’s reporting stood at 9,973.

Manitoba’s provincial public health officer also urged people to avoid gathering in large groups, saying many of the 100 new cases reported in the province on Monday linked back to social gatherings — including Thanksgiving.

Dr. Brent Roussin said if the province’s trajectory continues, health officials expect to have a total of more than 5,000 cases by the end of the week. The province had 4,349 cases as of Monday, with 2,117 considered active. There were 80 people in hospital, with 15 in intensive care.

WATCH | Manitoba frustrated by rise in COVID-19 cases:

As Manitoba sees a continued increase in COVID-19 cases, it’s seeing an unprecedented surge in its hospitals and ICUs. As pressure to close parts of the province mounts — officials are pointing fingers and doctors are bracing for the worst. 1:55

Roussin wasn’t the only Manitoba official with words of warning. Premier Brian Pallister expressed frustration on Monday at people with too many close contacts as cases increase.

“Grow up and stop going out there and giving people COVID,” the premier said. 

Saskatchewan reported 54 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, bringing the total number of reported cases in the province to 2,783, with 650 of those considered active cases.

In Ontario, a region west of Toronto is waiting for word on whether tougher measures will be imposed by the province as part of the effort to fight COVID-19. Dr. David Williams, the province’s chief medical officer, said while neither he nor Halton Region’s local medical officer are ready to make a decision on tighter measures for the area, they will be watching case counts and other metrics closely in the coming days.

Quebec Premier François Legault moved Monday to extend restrictions on people living in so-called red zones until Nov. 23, saying daily COVID-19 case numbers and deaths are still too high to allow an easing of limits in places like Montreal and Quebec City.

WATCH | How health authorities are trying to balance restrictions and COVID-19 caseloads:

Infectious disease physician Dr. Zain Chagla discusses how health officials try to balance restrictions and COVID-19 case loads when the data doesn’t show up for weeks after a decision is made. 1:35

In Atlantic Canada, New Brunswick reported three new cases on Monday, bringing the total number of active cases in the province to 60. Health officials in both Nova Scotia and Newfoundland reported one new case, while there were no new cases reported in Prince Edward Island.

There were two new cases reported in Yukon on Monday, and a mine in Nunavut reported that two workers who had been reported as presumptive cases were confirmed as positive for COVID-19. The workers were flown to their home province of Quebec and instructed to self-isolate.


What’s happening around the world

Several potential COVID-19 vaccines are seeing early results from Phase 3 trials, with AstraZeneca saying its has shown results in older and younger participants. Meanwhile, Moderna is so positive about its results it has applied to make its vaccine available earlier. 2:07

A case count maintained by Johns Hopkins University put the number of COVID-19 cases around the world at over 43.5 million as of Tuesday morning with over 29.2 million cases considered recovered. The Baltimore, Md.-based institution’s count of deaths stood at more than 1.1 million. 

In the Americas, the number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients in the United States is at a two-month high, straining health-care systems in some states.

The White House said on Tuesday it saw a potential deal on COVID-19 stimulus funding in “coming weeks,” casting doubt on whether a deal could be struck with Congress before the Nov. 3 election. A spokesperson for Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Monday that she was hopeful an agreement could be reached ahead of the election, but noted that there were still major issues that needed to be addressed.

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, people vote in the U.S. presidential election in the Jurassic Parking structure at Universal Studios Hollywood in Universal City, Calif., on Monday. (Mario Anzuoni/Reuters)

In the Asia-Pacific region, China reported the highest number of asymptomatic infections in nearly seven months. China detected 137 new asymptomatic coronavirus cases on Sunday in Kashgar in the northwestern region of Xinjiang after one person was found to have the virus the previous day — the first local new cases in 10 days in mainland China.

Hong Kong announced it would reopen public beaches and increase the number of people allowed to sit together in bars and restaurants starting Friday as the city continues to unwind strict COVID-19 rules put in place in July.

In India, authorities reported 36,470 newly confirmed coronavirus infections. That’s the lowest one-day tally in more than three months in a continuing downward trend. In its report Tuesday, the country’s health ministry also listed 488 new fatalities from COVID-19 in the previous 24 hours, raising the overall death toll to 119,502.

The case number reported Tuesday is the lowest since India had 35,065 newly confirmed infections on July 17. Last month, the country hit a peak of nearly 100,000 cases in a single day, but daily infections have been decreasing since then.

In Europe, many governments prepared on Tuesday to introduce new restrictions to try to curb a growing surge of coronavirus infections across the continent and provide economic balm to help businesses survive the pandemic. 

Italian police officers stand in front of a shattered Gucci store window during a protest of far-right activists against measures to curb the spread of COVID-19, in downtown Turin on Monday. (Marco Bertorello/AFP/Getty Images)

Hundreds of protesters took to the streets across Italy on Monday to vent their anger at the latest round of restrictions, including early closing for bars and restaurants, with demonstrations in some cities turning violent.

In neighbouring France, Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin warned the country to prepare for “difficult decisions” after some of the strictest restrictions currently in place anywhere in Europe have failed to halt the spread of the disease.

South Africa remained the hardest hit country in Africa, with more than 716,000 recorded COVID-19 cases and more than 19,000 deaths according to the Africa CDC.

People in Iran, the hardest-hit country in the Middle East, faced new daily records of infections and deaths. Authorities have ordered residents in Tehran to wear masks in public, and many public sector workers in the capital have been told to stay home every second day.

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Canada adds 2,531 new coronavirus cases, but new data shows record weekend surge

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Canada reported another 2,531 new confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus Monday, but new data from over the weekend reveals the country posted a far higher number a day earlier — shattering the daily record.

Backdated cases reported Monday by Alberta and British Columbia, who take weekends off from announcing testing data, show Sunday’s true total of new cases nationwide was 3,004.

It’s the first time over 3,000 cases have been reported in a single day across the country.

Saturday’s true daily total was nearly as high, at 2,932 new confirmed infections.

To date, Canada has reported 219,982 cases of COVID-19, although 184,306 of those patients have recovered from the disease.

Over 11.2 million tests have been performed to date. The weekend testing data shows an average three per cent positivity rate each day among new tests performed.

The national death toll has risen to 9,973, after 27 new deaths were reported Monday. Some of those deaths are historical, including in Quebec, while the deaths reported by Alberta and B.C. date occurred between Friday and Monday.

Alberta and British Columbia both set new records over the weekend, their data revealed on Monday. While Alberta surpassed 500 daily cases for the first time on Sunday, the previous day saw B.C. break a new threshold of over 300 cases.

Alberta reported another 504 new cases for Monday alone, bringing the province’s total to 25,733. Its death toll climbed to 307 after seven deaths over the weekend, while 20,949 patients have recovered.

“Alberta, we have a challenge,” chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said while announcing the new numbers.

“We have now crossed a tipping point and are losing the balance we have been seeking,” she added.

British Columbia’s public health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry called her own province’s weekend numbers “sobering.” She also announced new limits on social gatherings, including inside private homes.

“We have seen a notable increase in transmission of COVID-19 as a direct result of social gatherings in private homes,” she said.

“To get through our COVID-19 storm it requires all of us to do our part.”

There were 207 new cases confirmed in B.C. Monday, for a new total of 13,140 lab-confirmed cases. An additional 231 “epidemiologically linked” cases have not been confirmed through testing, but are part of the province’s grand total.

Three new deaths were reported over the weekend, taking the death toll to 259, and 10,734 recoveries have been confirmed to date.

Heading east, Saskatchewan reported 54 new cases and no new deaths. The province has seen 2,783 cases with 2,108 recoveries to date, while the death toll remains at 25.

Manitoba saw another 100 new cases, while an additional death was reported for a total of 55. There have now been 4,349 cases so far, yet 2,177 of those patients have recovered.

Ontario announced another 851 new cases — Monday’s highest provincial total — and six more deaths, bringing the province’s count to 71,224 cases and 3,099 deaths. A total of 60,839 people have recovered from the virus.

In Quebec, 808 new cases were reported along with 10 new deaths, although only two of them occurred over the past 24 hours. The province has seen 100,922 cases, 6,153 deaths and 85,822 recoveries to date.

Nearly every Atlantic province reported at least one new case on Monday, with no new deaths in the region. Prince Edward Island, which has seen 64 cases to date with only one active case remaining, has not reported data since Friday.

New Brunswick announced three new cases for a total of 331 to date. Six people have died to date in the province, while 265 have recovered

Nova Scotia saw one new case, bringing its total to 1,101 infections. Out of those, 65 have died and 1,031 others are considered recovered.

One new case was also reported in Newfoundland and Labrador, which has now seen 291 cases and four deaths to date, with 282 recoveries.

In the territories, the Yukon added two new cases to its total, which now sits at 22. Fifteen of those cases have recovered, while no deaths have been reported to date.

The Northwest Territories has seen nine cases to date, yet all but one of them have recovered. No cases were announced Monday.

Nunavut remains free of local coronavirus cases, although several infections have been confirmed among out-of-territory workers at a pair of local mines. Officials say those are not considered local cases and have been counted by their home jurisdictions.

The new surge in coronavirus cases across the country comes as the federal government comes under scrutiny for its spending amid the pandemic.

Opposition MPs on Monday voted for a motion approving a parliamentary probe of government contracts for supplies, remedies and vaccine candidates. The Liberal government argued revealing the sensitive contracts could jeopardize future deals.

Worldwide, the novel coronavirus has infected at least 43.4 million people and killed more than 1,157,000, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

The United States continues to lead the world in both confirmed cases, at nearly 8.7 million, and deaths, at over 225,000.

India is close behind in cases with 7.9 million, followed by Brazil at nearly 5.4 million.

 

 

 

 

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39% of Canadians have 'serious problem' with how police interact with people of colour: poll – CBC.ca

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Nearly two in five Canadians believe there is a serious problem with the way police forces interact with Black, Indigenous and people of colour (BIPOC) communities across the country, according to a new poll.

The Angus Reid survey Defend or Defund?, which polled 5,005 adult Canadians, also found that nearly two-thirds (63 per cent) agree systemic racism is a serious problem, and almost three-quarters (73 per cent) say police in Canada interact inappropriately with Black, Indigenous and people of colour at least some of the time.

When Canadians were asked which answer reflects their feelings about how police interact with non-white people on a national level, the results showed:

  • 39 per cent felt there was a serious problem.
  • 34 per cent said it was sometimes a problem.
  • 15 per cent said there was no problem.
  • 12 per cent weren’t sure.

But fewer Canadians see the way police treat non-white people in their province as a serious problem, and the number drops again when asked about their own communities.

When Canadians were asked the same question about community policing, the results showed:

  • 27 per cent felt there was a serious problem.
  • 27 per cent said it was sometimes a problem.
  • 27 per cent said there was no problem.
  • 19 per cent weren’t sure.

The poll found a significant difference in views between urban and rural areas. (Angus Reid Institute)

Urban vs. rural

The survey found there is a clear divide on the issue based on whether someone lives in an urban or rural area. 

Those outside of major cities were half as likely to say there was a serious problem with how police interact with Canadians of colour in their communities: Almost 30 per cent of urban respondents believe there is a serious problem, while only 14 per cent of rural respondents feel that way. Two in five of those polled in rural areas don’t see a problem at all. 

Breaking down the results between major urban centres in Canada, the survey showed a greater proportion of residents in the Greater Toronto Area were concerned about police interaction with non-white people than in western cities.

  • In the GTA, 41 per cent said it’s a serious problem;
  • In Winnipeg, 36 per cent;
  • In Montreal, 35 per cent;
  • In Vancouver, 29 per cent;
  • In Edmonton, 24 per cent;
  • In Calgary, 23 per cent.

Protesters in Toronto on Aug. 29 call for the defunding of police services across the country. (Evan Mitsui/CBC)

Topical issues within policing

The poll also explored viewpoints on several topical policing issues in Canada, including systemic racism, use of force and police funding.

It found that 28 per cent of Canadians agree there is systemic racism within the RCMP, specifically. And 27 per cent of Canadians said that police are too quick to use force to solve a problem.

Amid national and international outcry over violence and death at the hands of the police, there have been calls to defund the police. In the poll, 25 per cent of Canadians agree there is too much funding going to police forces and that it should be reduced. The survey found 38 per cent of Canadians believed funding levels were just right.

The online poll was conducted from Aug. 26 to Sept. 1, 2020, and carries +/- 1.5 percentage points margin of error 19 times out of 20.

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