MONTREAL -- One day after Quebec announced a tightening of restrictions in red alert zones, the province is reporting a significant increase in the number of hospitalizations due to COVID-19.

An additional 29 people are now in hospital in Quebec fighting the disease, for a total of 543, according to figures released from the province Wednesday morning. The number of people in intensive care rose by two, for a total of 123.

There were also 1,270 new cases of the novel coronavirus in the last 24 hours, while eight new deaths were recorded for a total of 10,709 deaths since the start of the pandemic. One death was from the last 24 hours and seven were from March 31 to April 5.

This is the eighth day in a row that saw daily cases exceed 1,000.

The Quebec Institute of Public Health (INSPQ) says that there are 10,795 active COVID-19 cases in the province.

The number of people who have recovered stands at 298,298, an increase of 914.

On the vaccine front, 43,631 doses of the vaccine were administered in the last 24 hours, for a total of 1,636,310. Health officials also analyzed 34,499 samples on April 5. 

The latest numbers come as the health minister is announcing new priority groups who will be eligible to receive the coronavirus vaccine.


Once again, Montreal say the highest increase in new cases with 299 new infections (total 118,198). Other regions that saw high increases in new cases include the National Capital region (250 new, 25,974 total), Outaouais (178 new, 8,428 total), Chaudiere-Appalaches (142 new, 13,075 total), and Monteregie (116 new, 45,053 total).

The National Capital region recorded three new deaths, while the Outaouais, Lanaudiere, the Laurentians, Monteregie all recorded one new death.


On the vaccine front, 43,631 doses of the vaccine were administered in the last 24 hours, for a total of 1,636,310. The total number of vaccines received in Quebec was 2,358,095 as of Tuesday. 


The INSPQ noted on Wednesday the number of cases in which a variant of the coronavirus was detected stands at 1,592. The number of presumptive cases is at 12,036, but the institute noted that the increase of 327 is low because of an “equipment failure” that is delaying analysis in some regions. “The situation will be resolved as soon as possible,” INSPQ said.

As of Wednesday, INSPQ is now reporting the proportion of new cases over the previous seven days that identified a variant of the COVID-19. The institute reported 66.9 per cent of cases detected a variant of the virus.