Canada sees onset of winter surge as key provinces report record spikes in Covid-19 cases

More cases were reported in several provinces than even at the height of the onset of the coronavirus pandemic this spring
Pedestrians wearing protective masks cross a street in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, on November 13.(Bloomberg)
Pedestrians wearing protective masks cross a street in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, on November 13.(Bloomberg)
Updated on Nov 15, 2020 06:25 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, Toronto | By Anirudh Bhattacharyya

Several jurisdictions in Canada recorded new highs for Covid-19 infections as the country witnesses the onset of a winter surge.

More cases were reported in several provinces than even at the height of the onset of the coronavirus pandemic this spring. The number of confirmed cases spiked by 4,617 to reach 2,91,648, while 43 more deaths were reported, pushing up the total toll to 10,871.

According to the outlet Global News, four provinces recorded their highest single-day spikes in cases including the two worst affected ones: Ontario and Quebec.

In a statement, Canada’s chief public health officer Theresa Tam warned things could get worse, saying, “Though the cumulative number is high and continues to increase, with many areas experiencing accelerated growth, it is important to remember that the vast majority of Canadians remain susceptible to Covid-19.”

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has warned that the Christmas season, with celebrations and family gatherings, could be jeopardised if these numbers kept escalating and pleaded with Canadians to be careful. He had also called for virtual celebrations of the Diwali festival in the country, which was echoed by Tam.

Tam called for a “a collective effort to support and sustain the public health response”.

The provinces of Quebec, Ontario, Saskatchewan and Alberta reported their worst daily surge in cases since the pandemic began. Even the remote Arctic territory of Nunavut doubled its tally from four to eight. Leaders have signalled that some lockdown measures may have to be reimposed to curb the spread if this trend continues.

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Wednesday, October 20, 2021