MONTREAL -- Quebec health authorities reported 1,577 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, bringing the total number of people infected in the province since the start of the pandemic to 153,176. Of the new cases, 14,600 are active.

Quebec's seven-day average of new COVID-19 cases now stands at 1,544 per day. 

The province also reported another 22 deaths linked to the disease, for a total of 7,277 since the pandemic began. Of the latest deaths, three occurred in the past 24 hours, 18 took place between Nov. 30 and Dec. 5 and one before Nov. 30. 

Hospitalizations increased by 40 from Sunday to Monday and there are now 818 people receiving treatment for COVID-19 in Quebec hospitals. Of them, 105 are in the intensive care ward, which is three more than Sunday's total. 

Montreal reported the highest number of new cases of any Quebec region on Monday, with 472 (54,290 total), followed by Monteregie, with 220 (total 21,456).

Lanaudiere (total 8,361) and Quebec City (total 12,986) reported 160 new cases each, and Laval reported 148 total 12,332).

Another 1,279 people were confirmed recovered from COVID-19 as of Monday, for a total of 131,297.

Quebec reported that it completed analyses of 27,000 COVID-19 samples on Dec. 5 (Quebec reports its daily testing figures from two days prior).