Quebec has once again reported the highest single-day increase of COVID-19 cases in Canada with an explosion of more than 9,000 infections reported on Thursday.

The province said there were 9,397 new cases and six more people have died due to the virus. There have been 11,658 deaths since March 2020.

The majority of the new cases were from unvaccinated people. Of the more than 9,000 cases, 5,242 (55 per cent) were unvaccinated, 238 (2.5 per cent) had their first dose more than two weeks ago, and 3,917 (41 per cent) had their second dose more than seven days ago. 

Hospital cases also rose again with an increase of 28 hospitalizations from the day before, for a total of 473 people in hospital with the coronavirus. 

The overall increase of 28 hospitalizations comes after 92 people were admitted to hospital in the last 24 hours with the virus and 64 people were discharged.

The majority of the new admissions to hospital (60 cases) were from unvaccinated people, while 32 were people who got their second dose of the vaccine more than seven days ago. 

The number of people in the ICU also rose by three from the day before, for a total of 91 intensive care cases.

The Quebec Institute of Public Health (INSPQ) is also reporting a large increase in active cases. There are now 41,807 active cases, up by 7,646 from the day before.

The test positivity rate in Quebec is 14.6 per cent, but in Montreal, where the virus is spreading rapidly, the positivity rate is between 18 and 20 per cent, according to Montreal public health director Dr. Mylène Drouin. 

With one in five people who get tested receiving a positive result in Montreal, Drouin said Thursday that health officials are struggling to keep up with their contact tracing efforts and cannot continue to follow every case.

Montreal recorded 3,668 new cases on Thursday. 

Health-care workers also performed a record-number of tests — 54,520 on Dec. 21.


In just a couple of short weeks, the Omicron variant has become the dominant variant in Quebec. The INSPQ said Thursday there were 251 more Omicron cases identified, with more samples still in testing.

There have been 2,776 Omicron cases confirmed so far through sequencing. 

While Omicron appears to spreading rapidly throughout the province, and the rest of Canada, Quebec's health minister said the variant's effect has not been felt in hospitals. Most of the people who end up in hospital are affected by the Delta variant, he told a news conference on Wednesday. 

Omicron and Delta are the only COVID-19 variants that are spreading in Quebec, according to the INSPQ. 


Vaccinations are also on the rise in Quebec, with 95,985 more doses being given out in the last 24 hours, for a total of 14,619,762 doses administered in Quebec. 

As of Thursday, 7,250,455 first doses have been administered, covering 89 per cent of the population five and older. For second doses, coverage is at 81 per cent with 6,651,802 doses.

The province also administered 81,893 booster shots on Wednesday, for a total of 909,643 third jabs covering 11 per cent of the population.