Quebec COVID-19 hospitalizations continue to drop as deaths approach 10,000
MONTREAL -- Quebec reported 1,101 new positive COVID-19 cases Friday, as the total number of deaths due to the disease inches closer to 10,000 since the start of the pandemic.
Quebec reported 33 more deaths due to the disease including seven in the past 24 hours, 18 between Jan. 29 and Feb. 3, six before Jan. 29, and two at an unknown date.
The total number of deaths due to the novel coronavirus in the province since the start of the pandemic is now 9,973.
The total number of positive cases in the province is now 267,773 including 245,339 people who are reported to have recovered from the disease, 1,570 more than on Thursday.
Friday's new cases is 10 shy of the seven-day average, which is now 1,111 new cases per day.
The Quebec Istitute of Public Health reported that there are 12,461 active COVID-19 cases in the province.
The number of hospitalizations is now 1,040, which is 30 fewer patients than Thursday. Of those, 168 are in the intensive care ward, seven fewer than 24 hours ago.
TESTING, VACCINATIONS, AND VARIANTS
Health-care professionals analyzed 31,482 samples Feb. 3.
Quebec also announced that 4,140 doses of vaccine were administered Thursday bringing the total number of vaccinations in the province to 248,673 (2.6 per cent of the population).
Minister of Health Christian Dube said Friday that the province started its vaccination campaign, but that now there are almost no vaccines remaining.
"We are slowed down by the lack of vaccines from the federal government," he said, adding that all doses should arrive by March 31.
Dube said the federal government has not been transparent with the provincial health authorities on details surrounding the number of doses received from the companies making the vaccines.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Friday the government knew short-term delays in shipments would be a possibility, and that they planned accodingly.
"I hear it from all Canadians right now, people are worried," said Trudeau. "People are tired of this pandemic. They want to know when this winter is going to be over. They want to know when they can go back to everything they've done before. They want to know, mostly when their grandparents are going to be safe. When the vaccines are going to come."
Trudeau added that Canada is "on track" to get the 6 million doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine by the end of March.
"I speak almost every week with the CEOs of these vaccine companies," said Trudeau. "They have assured me that they will meet their obligations, their contractual obligations to deliver 6 million doses to Canadians by the end of March, which means we are still very much on track for 20 million doses in the spring from Pfizer, Moderna, with more vaccine companies in the process of approval right now and we will get everyone vaccinated."
Dube also said the province continues to monitor the new variants of COVID-19 in the province, and that the province has identified eight cases of the U.K. variant in Quebec.
"We are also closely monitoring the development of new variants of the virus in Quebec," said Dube.
He said no strains from South America or Africa have been detected in the province.
"We will develop PCR screening tests to identify strains more quickly," said director of public health Horacio Arruda.
Montreal with 498 new cases (96,914 total) reported the highest increase in new cases followed by Monteregie (181 new, 38,960 total), Laval (93 new, 22,641 total), and the Laurentians (88 new, 14,925 total).
Ten deaths were reported in Montreal (4,361 total); nine in Monteregie (1,380 total); three in Quebec City (943 total); two in Mauricie-et-Centre-du-Quebec (471 total), Outaouais (156 total), Chaudiere-Appalaches (268 total), and Lanaudiere (470 total).
One death was reported in the Eastern Townships (283 total), and Laval (846 total).
Dube said the government would prefer not to ban inter-regional travel, but that the Ministry of Transportation is monitoring the situation closely.
Across Canada, there have been 796,505 positive COVID-19 cases reported and 20,590 deaths attributed to the disease since the virus first appeared in the country.
The following is a breakdown of cases and deaths across the country:
- 275,330 cases in Ontario, including 6,438 deaths;
- 267,773 cases in Quebec, including 9,973 deaths;
- 125,672 cases in Alberta, including 1,684 deaths;
- 69,245 cases in British Columbia, including 1,240 deaths;
- 29,968 cases in Manitoba, including 837 deaths;
- 24,680 cases in Saskatchewan, including 329 deaths;
- 1,584 cases in Nova Scotia, including 65 deaths;
- 1,318 cases in New Brunswick, including 18 deaths;
- 411 cases in Newfoundland and Labrador, including four deaths;
- 296 cases in Nunavut, including one death;
- 113 cases in Prince Edward Island;
- 70 cases in the Yukon, including one death;
- 2 cases in the Northwest Territories.
-- with files from the Canadian Press.