MONTREAL -- Quebec reported an unusually low increase in COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, with just 561 people newly infected, as hospitalizations also dropped.

That's the province's lowest daily count since September 23, which was the last date Quebec recorded fewer than 500 cases in a day.

The daily average increase for the last seven days is now 700.

Recoveries outnumbered new cases, with 681 more people reportedly virus-free on Tuesday. There are now 6,753 known active coronavirus cases in Quebec. 

Hospitalizations dropped by 20 on Tuesday, leaving 533 people in care. Of those, 91 are in the intensive care unit, a decrease of five. Over the last seven days, hospitalizations have lowered at an average of six people per day. 

The province also reported eight more people have died of the virus. Of those eight people, three died in the last 24 hours, another three between March 9 and 14, and two died at an unknown date.

Quebec also reported that there are at least 522 variant cases in Quebec, an increase of 179 over the day before. A majority of the variant cases are from the UK, variant B.1.1.7., for which the tally now stands at 413. Most those cases are in Montreal, which has recorded 311 cases of the UK variant. 

Meanwhile, the vairant first identified in South Africa, B.1.251, has emerged more prominantly in Abitibi-Temiscamingue, where 100 of the 106 variant cases have been found.  

Since the beginning of the pandemic, 298,747 people have caught the virus, and 281,436 have recovered.

The province administered 28,861 doses of vaccines, for a total of 774,600. As of Tuesday morning, 9.1 per cent of Quebecers have recieved at lease one dose of a vaccine. 

Health-care professionals conducted 18,784 coronavirus tests on March 14. Quebec releases this information 48 hours after the reported day. 

From seven days prior to Sunday, the rolling average positivity rate is now 2.8 per cent.  


Montreal was the most affected region, reporting 245 new coronavirus cases, for a total of 111,195 since March 2020. 

Next was Laval (75 new, 25,994 total), Monteregie (54 new, 42,913 total), the Laurentians (34 new, 17,186 total), and Saguenay – Lac-Saint-Jean (32 new, 8,960 total).

Of the eight reported deaths, six occured in Montreal (4,576 total), one was reported in Lanaudiere (497 total), and Monteregie reached a grim milestone of 1,500 total deaths after adding one new death.