What you need to know today in Alberta:
Alberta has placed two orders for 1.7 million masks, valued at a total of $4.2 million, with Old Navy and IFR Workwear.
Last week, the Alberta government announced that masks will be mandatory for all school staff and most Alberta students when they return to school in September.
Students from Grades 4 through 12 will be required to wear masks in all public spaces and can choose to wear them while seated in the class. Masks will be optional for younger students.
Education Minister Adriana LaGrange said in an emailed release on Saturday that “some have recently questioned the ability” of the provincial government to purchase the needed number of masks in time, adding that the government approached “experienced, established vendors” to ensure the masks would arrive before classes resume.
The Alberta government has announced $48 million in funding for shelters and community organizations that have been serving homeless people during the COVID-19 pandemic.
A bylaw passed on Tuesday makes face coverings compulsory on most of Jasper’s downtown sidewalks and in outdoor public places where a two-metre distance can’t be maintained. Jasper joins Banff in making masks mandatory in some outdoor areas.
We’ve curated a list of towns and cities in the province, outlining their corresponding policies on masks. We’ll try to keep it updated regularly.
Here’s a regional breakdown of active cases across the province as of Aug. 7:
- Calgary zone: 368 cases.
- Edmonton zone: 329 cases.
- Central zone: 224 cases.
- North zone: 111 cases.
- South zone: 90 cases.
- Unknown: 3 cases.
What you need to know today in Canada:
Ontario has reported its sixth-straight day of fewer than 100 new cases of COVID-19, with 70 new cases reported Saturday and one new death.
The province has seen nearly 40,000 cases of the virus and 2,784 deaths. Hospitalizations and ICU admissions also continue to decline in the province.
The federal government has entered into two agreements to secure millions of doses of potential COVID-19 vaccines. Public Services and Procurement Minister Anita Anand announced that the Government of Canada has agreements with Pfizer and Moderna.
New data shows thousands of Canadians were hospitalized or died after deliberately harming themselves last year, and experts fear the numbers will climb due to stress brought on by the pandemic.
Physical distancing and mask-wearing could be necessary for two or three years even with vaccine, according to Canada’s chief public health officer, Dr. Theresa Tam.
Survey results released on Tuesday from the non-profit Angus Reid Institute found half of Canadians say they have no reservations and are ready to get a COVID-19 vaccination as soon as it’s available.
But 32 per cent — roughly a third of respondents — say they’d likely wait a while. Another 14 per cent don’t want to get a vaccine at all.
The number of large Canadian businesses seeking protection from creditors hit its highest point in more than a decade in May and June, and experts say the trend will likely continue because of COVID-19.
The Canada-U.S. border could be closed for months. The federal government has already announced that the border will remain closed at least until Aug. 21, but several experts told CBC News that they predict the border won’t open until sometime next year.
According to a Leger Marketing poll of 1,500 Canadians conducted last month, 86 per cent of respondents said they were opposed to the idea of reopening the border at the end of July.
As Quebec begins to allow as many as 250 people to gather at indoor public events, up from 50, doctors are circulating a petition to reverse what they say is an unnecessary, dangerous move. Public health experts in Quebec say a second wave is coming.
As of 10:15 a.m. ET on Sunday, Canada had 119,404 confirmed and presumptive coronavirus cases. Provinces and territories listed 103,715 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 9,017.
Self-assessment and supports:
Alberta Health Services has an online self-assessment tool that you can use to determine if you have symptoms of COVID-19, but testing is open to anyone, even without symptoms.
The province says Albertans who have returned to Canada from other countries must self-isolate. Unless your situation is critical and requires a call to 911, Albertans are advised to call Health Link at 811 before visiting a physician, hospital or other health-care facility.
If you have symptoms, even mild, you are to self-isolate for at least 10 days from the onset of symptoms, until the symptoms have disappeared.
The province also operates a confidential mental health support line at 1-877-303-2642 and addiction help line at 1-866-332-2322, both available 24 hours a day.
Online resources are available for advice on handling stressful situations and ways to talk with children.
There is a 24-hour family violence information line at 310-1818 to get anonymous help in more than 170 languages, and Alberta’s One Line for Sexual Violence is available at 1-866-403-8000, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Montreal reports 229 new cases of COVID-19, one more death – CTV News Montreal
Montreal public health reported 229 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, bringing the total number of cases in the city since the start of the pandemic to 32,292.
One more person has died due to the disease in the city, for a total of 3,478. Quebec health officials announced that the death took place sometime between Sept. 18 and 23. Montreal’s data shows it was a person aged 80 and over.
Montreal North remains the area most impacted by COVID-19, accounting for 2,808 of the city’s cases. Mercier-Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, Villeray-Saint-Michel-Parc-Extension and Cote-des-Neiges-Notre-Dame-de-Grace are the runners up with 2,634 cases, 2,589 cases and 2,564 cases respectively.
As of Friday, there are 26 long-term care homes and public retirement homes with at least one confirmed case of COVID-19.
Montreal remains “orange” or at the “level 3 warning” stage on Quebec’s regional COVID-19 alert map.
Quebec health minister asks people to avoid gatherings for 28 days as COVID-19 cases surpass 70000 – CTV News Montreal
Quebec’s health minister is insisting for Quebecers to avoid social gatherings for at least 28 days.
Christian Dube made the announcement at a press conference on Friday after the province surpassed 70,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19.
“If we do this, I think that it’ll encourage people to understand that, yes, it’s an additional effort that we’re asking you to do, but there’s an end to it,” he said. “It’s for a month, it’s not permanent, we are asking you for one month of efforts to break this second wave.”
In a news conference on Thursday, Dube specified he’s asking Quebecers to avoid dinners, barbecues, parties, and other such gatherings between people who aren’t part of the same bubble. The measure is an attempt to halt community transmission that public health says is the culprit of Quebec’s recent uptick in cases of COVID-19.
“We’re saying make a small social effort now,” Dube said. “If we succeed, well, the curve — we will flatten it.”
If members of the same bubble would like to dine together at a restaurant, they can do so, the government said.
When pressed about whether restaurants and bars will close once regions begin entering the “red alert” level on the province’s COVID-19 map, public health director Dr. Horacio Arruda said it all depends on where the outbreaks in the province are coming from. If restaurants aren’t presenting a risk, they won’t have to close, Arruda said.
Quebec health authorities reported 637 new cases of the disease on Friday, bringing the provincial total to 70,307 since the start of the pandemic.
Friday’s update is the highest number of cases Quebec has reported over a 24-hour period since May 21, when it reported 718.
Four more people have died in the province, for a total of 5,814. Officials say the deaths took place between Sept. 18 and 23.
A significant portion of the cases have been recorded in the Montreal region (229, for a total of 32,292), while 132 cases have been recorded in Quebec City (3,483), 17 in the Eastern Townships (1,658), 38 in Chaudiere-Appalaches (1,098), 43 in Laval (6,831), 20 in Outaouais (1,230), 16 in the Laurentians (4,593) and 83 in Monteregie (10,281).
Dube announced that the entire metropolitan region of Montreal and the MRC Riviere du Nord — including the Saint-Jerome area — are now in the “orange” alert level on the province’s regional COVID-19 alert map.
“The changes in the alert levels demonstrate the seriousness of the situation,” Dube said.
As of Friday, there are 199 people being treated for COVID-19 in Quebec hospitals, which is an increase of 15 from the number reported on Thursday. Of them, 33 people are receiving treatment in the intensive care ward, which is an increase of two over the past 24 hours.
Quebec reported another 313 recoveries on Friday, bringing the total number of people who’ve recovered from the disease in the province to 60,256 — or 85.7 per cent of the cumulative cases.
Quebec reported that it completed analyses of 36,060 samples on Sept. 23 (Quebec reports its daily testing figures from two days prior). Health Minister Christian Dube said on Friday that this testing update beat Quebec’s daily record.
WHEN PUBLIC HEALTH CALLS
Public health said last week that only one third of the people it attempted to reach for contact-tracing purposes answered the phone. Citizens were quick to point out that the calls come from a blocked number, which creates confusion and prevents people from calling back. Dube announced on Friday that calls from public health will now be labelled “Sante Publique.”
Quebec tops 70,000 coronavirus cases as province reports 637 new infections – Global News
The vaccine is being developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University.
Coronavirus: Canada’s PM, top doctor urge patience on development of COVID-19 rapid testing
It’s one of several potential vaccines that the government has signed deals to procure in the event they are successful.
Agreements were previously reached with major pharmaceutical companies including Sanofi, GlaxoSmithKline, Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson and Novavax.
“Canadians must have access to a safe and effective vaccine against COVID-19 as quickly as possible, no matter where it was developed,” Trudeau said during a press conference in Ottawa on Friday.
Coronavirus: Canada secured packaging materials for up to 80 million vaccine doses, minister says
Trudeau also announced that Canada is joining an international coalition on vaccine distribution.
Canada will contribute $440 million toward the COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access Facility, known as COVAX.
Canada is joining both parts of the initiative: one which secures access to millions of doses of vaccines for Canada, and the other which has wealthier nations pooling their funds to help lower and middle-income countries secure doses as well.
The deal will give Canada the option to buy up to 15 million doses, Trudeau said.
Joining the program will allow Canada to help ensure the successful vaccine is distributed “quickly and fairly” around the world, according to the prime minister.
“This pandemic cannot be solved by any one country alone because to eliminate the virus anywhere, we need to eliminate it everywhere,” he said.
–With files from The Canadian Press
© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.
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