An overview of the latest news on COVID-19 in Canada: – A Canadian study suggests that the antiviral drug remdesivir may have a “modest but significant effect” on the outcomes of patients with COVID-19, including reducing the need for mechanical ventilation of approx.
An overview of the latest news on COVID-19 in Canada:
— A Canadian study suggests that the antiviral drug remdesivir may have a “small but significant effect” on the outcomes of patients with COVID-19, including reducing the need for mechanical ventilation by around 50%. The study, published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, is billed as the largest single-country remdesivir trial reported to date. The findings are part of a larger study called World Health Organization Solidarity, a randomized, controlled trial evaluating the impact of remdesivir on COVID-19 patients in multiple countries.
– Ontario sees “glimmers of hope” in its fight against the Omicron variant, the health minister said, paving the way for what the premier called a positive announcement on the restrictions later this week. COVID-19 cases are expected to peak this month, Christine Elliott says, with a spike in hospitalizations and intensive care admissions to follow. New hospitalizations are doubling about every two weeks, instead of doubling every seven days, as was the case just a few weeks ago, she says. “I want to be clear, February will continue to pose challenges, especially for our hospitals, as people continue to need care for COVID-19,” Elliott said. “But our focus has always been to make sure the capacity is there to deliver care to those who need it. Given current trends, we are increasingly confident in our ability to do so.”
– Parents in Toronto expressed mixed emotions as they dropped their children off at school for the first time in weeks, saying they were worried about COVID-19 but happy their children were returning to in-person learning. Returning to physical classrooms after two weeks of remote learning was delayed two days for the Toronto District School Board after a major snowstorm hit Monday. Outside a primary school in the north of the city, Natasha Chadenga said she felt “a lot of apprehension” about sending her six-year-old daughter away. “It doesn’t look like the (education) ministry has put in place everything that needs to be put in place to support schools,” she said. “I really fear that in a week or four days from now they will be sent home, with some kind of epidemic in the school.”
— One of Alberta’s largest school boards wants the province to open vaccination clinics in schools as the number of students and staff infected with COVID-19 increases. Trisha Estabrooks, president of the Edmonton Public Schools Board, said a letter would be sent to the UCP government by the end of the week. It comes after the board unanimously passed a motion on Tuesday to try to get more children aged 5 to 11 vaccinated and prevent the spread of the Omicron variant in classrooms. Edmonton Public Schools says on its website that more than 5% of its 105,787 students were absent Tuesday due to COVID-19, up from 4% the day before.
– Additional financial assistance is on the way for businesses in British Columbia forced to remain closed for at least a month as the province tries to contain the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19. A statement from the Department for Jobs, Economic Recovery and Innovation says businesses, including event venues, bars, nightclubs and lounges that do not serve full meals, are eligible for grants of up to $20,000, depending on enrollment. The funds, which double the amount available to these businesses, can be claimed through the provincial COVID-19 Closure Relief Grant. Businesses that have been ordered closed by the provincial health official until at least February 16 are eligible for the highest amount, while those that have been allowed to reopen can claim up to $10,000.
— The Nunavik region of Quebec went into lockdown, as more than half of the 14 Inuit communities in the northern territory were struggling with the community spread of COVID-19. “It’s only a matter of time before Omicron spreads to every community,” reads a post on the Nunavik Regional Health and Social Services Board’s Facebook page, referring to to the highly transmissible mutation of the novel coronavirus. A curfew from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. is in effect across the region, which spans the northern third of the province. Schools and daycares remain open, but all non-essential public places are closed and private indoor gatherings are prohibited. Health officials on Tuesday reported 28 new cases in the region, which had 260 active infections.
– Manitoba has recorded 12 more deaths related to COVID-19 as the number of people hospitalized with the virus continues to rise. Health officials say the number of hospitalizations for COVID-19 reached 631, an increase of 11 in one day. The number of COVID-19 cases in intensive care has increased by two to 50.
— Prince Edward Island health officials report the province’s third death related to COVID-19. The death of the 60- to 79-year-old follows news last week of the first two COVID-19 deaths of the pandemic in Prince Edward Island. Chief Public Health Officer Dr Heather Morrison reported 304 new cases of COVID-19 on the island, bringing the total number of active cases to 2,514.
– Nova Scotia is reporting 11 new hospital admissions and three more deaths from COVID-19. Health officials said a man in his 60s and a man and woman in their 40s have died in the Halifax area. Eight deaths from COVID-19 have been reported in the past three days. A total of 83 people are hospitalized and receiving care in designated COVID-19 units, 12 of whom are in intensive care.
– The New Brunswick government says more than 1,600 people responded in less than 24 hours to its call for volunteers to help support its response to COVID-19, as many health care workers are off work . Health Minister Dorothy Shephard says she is encouraged that many people responded to the government’s call on Tuesday for help with clinical and non-clinical services. There are currently 342 healthcare workers in the province self-isolating after testing positive for COVID-19.
This report from The Canadian Press was first published on January 19, 2022.
The Canadian Press