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The latest news on COVID-19 developments in Canada

·7 min read

The latest news on COVID-19 developments in Canada (all times Eastern):

6:30 p.m.

British Columbia’s top doctor is cracking down on the spread of COVID-19 with a new public health order that restricts gatherings in private homes to a maximum of six guests.

The so-called "safe six" rule came as provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry reported the highest-ever three-day jump in infections in B.C. with 817 cases confirmed between Friday and Monday.

Henry is also upping what she called her "expectation" that people wear non-medical masks or face coverings in public spaces at all times, though it’s not an order.

She says two schools have been closed temporarily after cases of COVID-19 were detected and there is a new community outbreak associated with the Surrey Pretrial Services Centre.

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5:50 p.m.

Alberta is imposing a mandatory 15-person limit on social gatherings in Edmonton and Calgary.

Voluntary measures are also being recommended in the two cities, with people being advised to wear masks at work and limiting their circles to three cohorts.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw, the province's chief medical health officer, says the warning bell is ringing.

She says she's concerned about increasing case numbers.

The province is reporting 1,440 cases over the last three days.

____

5:20 p.m.

Quebec is extending its partial lockdown order for another four weeks.

Premier Francois Legault told a news conference today that the rates of new, daily COVID-19 cases and deaths linked to the virus are too high.

Legault said gyms, bars and most entertainment venues will remain closed until Nov. 23 in the province’s biggest cities.

The premier said businesses that refuse to obey lockdown orders will be fined.

____

3:30 p.m.

Nova Scotia public health officials are warning passengers on an Air Canada flight from Toronto to Halifax of a potential exposure to COVID-19.

Air Canada Flight 626 on Oct. 24 left Toronto at 9:30 p.m. and landed in Halifax at 12:15 a.m. on Oct. 25.

Officials are asking passengers who sat in rows 18 to 24 and in seats A, B and C to call 811 for advice and to continue to self-isolate. 

Officials say anyone exposed to the virus on this flight may develop symptoms up to and including Nov. 7.

____

2 p.m.

New Brunswick is reporting three new cases of COVID-19 and 60 active cases overall.

Two of the new cases are in the Fredericton region and one is in the Campbellton region, where public health officials are battling an ongoing outbreak.

Officials say the two cases in the Fredericton region are travel-related, and the case in Campbellton is under investigation.

New Brunswick has had 331 confirmed COVID-19 cases since the onset of the pandemic, including six deaths.

____

1:30 p.m.

Health officials have announced a woman in her 80s is the latest death connected to Manitoba's deadliest outbreak at a care home.

Eighteen people at Parkview Place in Winnipeg have died.

There were 100 new infections announced Monday, the vast majority in the capital city, which is under enhanced restrictions after a stark increase in infections during recent months.

Dr. Brent Roussin, the chief provincial public health officer, says the increasing numbers have put pressures on the health-care system.

There are 80 people in hospital and 15 people in intensive care.

There have been 4,349 cases in Manitoba, and 2,117 are currently active. 

Fifty-five people have died.

____

1 p.m.

Newfoundland and Labrador is reporting one new case of COVID-19, and five active cases overall. 

The new confirmed case is a woman in her 50s who returned to the province from work in Alberta.

Public health officials say she has been self-isolating and contact tracing is underway.

Newfoundland and Labrador has now had 291 cases of COVID-19 since the onset of the pandemic, including four deaths.

____

12:40 p.m.

All of the Alberta politicians who came into contact with a provincial cabinet minister infected with COVID-19 have tested negative for the virus.

Municipal Affairs Minister Tracy Allard tested positive for COVID-19 last Wednesday. 

She had interacted during the previous week with Premier Jason Kenney, Transportation Minister Ric McIver and United Conservative MLAs Angela Pitt, Peter Guthrie and Nathan Neudorf. 

Kenney received his negative test result last Thursday, but has said he would continue to isolate at home for a week as a precaution.

Christine Myatt, a spokeswoman for Kenney, says the other four have also tested negative and will continue to self-isolate.

____

12:40 p.m. 

Nova Scotia is reporting one new case of COVID-19 and now has five active cases of the virus.

Health officials say the new case is in the central health zone and the person is a close contact of a previously reported travel-related case.

Nova Scotia has confirmed 1,101 COVID-19 cases and 1,031 cases are now resolved.

There have been 65 deaths since the onset of the pandemic.

____

12:30 p.m.

Officials say an outbreak of COVID-19 at a Manitoba jail began with a guard who worked for two days before developing symptoms.

The outbreak at Headingley Correctional Centre, just west of Winnipeg, now includes 33 inmates and six staff members.

Justice officials say five staff at other facilities and one inmate at a youth correctional facility have also tested positive.

Justice Minister Cliff Cullen says the pandemic is being taken very seriously and the province has developed comprehensive plans, including instructional videos for inmates and staff, to deal with the situation.

He says inmates and guards are required to wear masks and interactions between people has been limited.

The opposition New Democrats and union leaders have been critical of the provincial response to the pandemic behind bars, saying it puts inmates and guards at risk.

____

11:15 a.m.

Quebec is reporting 808 new COVID-19 cases and 10 additional deaths linked to the virus.

Two of those deaths were in the past 24 hours, while six were from last week and the two others were from an unknown date.

The number of hospitalizations dropped by eight from a day earlier to 543, and the number of patients in intensive care cases decreased by four to 93.

The province has now recorded 100,922 COVID-19 infections and 6,153 deaths — the highest in the country.

____

11 a.m.

Ontario is reporting 851 new cases of COVID-19 today, and six new deaths due to the virus.

Health Minister Christine Elliott says 281 cases are in Toronto, 215 in Peel Region, 90 in York Region and 76 in Ottawa.

The province says it has conducted 28,652 tests since the last daily report, with an additional 17,603 being processed.

In total, 295 people are hospitalized in Ontario due to COVID-19, including 78 in intensive care. 

Meanwhile, Premier Doug Ford's office says it will not announce today whether the province will impose stricter COVID-19 restrictions on two Toronto-area regions. 

Ford had said Friday that the experts would look at the caseload in Halton and Durham regions over the weekend to determine whether they need to roll back to a modified Stage 2 of the province's pandemic recovery plan.

____

10:45 a.m.

A coalition of about 200 Quebec gym, yoga, dance studio and martial arts business owners say they intend to reopen their doors on Thursday in defiance of provincial health restrictions.

The businesses are calling on Quebec Premier Francois Legault to lift COVID-19 restrictions that were imposed on fitness facilities Oct. 8.

In a statement, they say their facilities were not the source of COVID-19 outbreaks and they contribute to the overall physical and mental health of the population.

They say the lockdown measures will force them out of business after they've made significant investments to comply with health rules. 

They plan to reopen across the province, but will back down if health authorities are able to demonstrate by Thursday that their operations are sources of outbreaks.

____

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 26, 2020. 

The Canadian Press