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Montreal General Hospital dealing with summertime COVID-19 outbreak


There is a COVID-19 outbreak on the 18th floor of the Montreal General Hospital as Quebec and other jurisdictions see a rise in infections.

The hospital has implemented a mandatory mask policy for everyone on that unit and everyone on the floor is being monitored for symptoms.

Overall, the numbers for positive tests for COVID-19 in Quebec are up from 448 in April to 745 yesterday. That's still far below the 3,000 we had a day in early January.

The 22 deaths reported by the province's public health institute, the Institut national de santé publique du Québec (INSPQ) during the week of June 30 is still far below the 100 a week Quebec was seeing a year ago.

However, the number of cases this time of the year is unexpected, with cases detected in hospitals and long-term care homes. The outbreaks Quebec is seeing are likely due to a new sub-variant, KP.3

But Quebec's public health director, Dr. Luc Boileau, said they are under control thanks to infection control protocols.

"It's not as bad as it was a couple of years ago because we were not well-protected but now a lot of people in Quebec has experienced COVID-19 so far — sometimes a couple of times. And most of our citizens have been vaccinated so they have protection. But even with that the new variant will find its way and might induce a disease that for most of us will not be very important, but for some of us it might be dangerous and life-threatening and this is why, unfortunately, we have to hospitalize some of those cases," Boileau said, adding that the elderly are more at risk.

"It's clear that we still have to be concerned about that."

And Dr. Boileau says there will be another COVID-19 booster campaign in the fall again when more people will be heading indoors.

Meanwhile, even if people are covered with booster shots, they might consider masking up when in crowds or in airports and on airplanes where people can be exposed to variants from different countries.

Public health also recommends people who are sick to mask up, especially if they are around vulnerable people. Top Stories

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