Canada to announce changes to COVID-19 border measures next week – Penticton Western News
The federal government will announce changes to pandemic measures at Canada‘s borders next week, Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos announced Friday, while Canada’s chief public health officer said the country is considering more sustainable plans to manage COVID-19.
Currently, the government advises against all non-essential international travel.
Anyone traveling to Canada by air, passenger train or boat must be vaccinated against COVID-19, and international travelers are subject to COVID-19 testing requirements.
Duclos told a news conference that the worst of the latest wave of the pandemic is now behind Canada, and the government will “continue to fine-tune” measures accordingly.
Dr Theresa Tam, Chief Public Health Officer, said that due to the infectious nature of the Omicron variant, it is very difficult to stop every case at the border and prevent an infected person from transmitting the virus. virus to someone else.
At the same time, the number of new cases in Canada has fallen to around 11,000 reported daily, although this is an incomplete count, as many jurisdictions have limited testing to high-risk people.
Yet Canada cannot simply decide to live with the virus and remove measures altogether when so many people are still dying from COVID-19 and hospitals are vulnerable to a potentially overwhelming influx of seriously ill people, Duclos said. .
There are 130 people dying from COVID-19 every day, Tam said. About 8,700 people are being treated for the virus in hospital each day and 1,000 are receiving intensive care, according to the latest data from the Public Health Agency of Canada.
While still high, these numbers show Canada is past the peak of the Omicron wave and provinces can begin to ease COVID-19 restrictions, Tam said.
Provinces must also plan for the future, as the virus will not go away and other variants could emerge with uncertain transmission and severity, she said. Those plans should include testing, public health measures, vaccines and treatments, she said.
Families should also be equipped with tools to make their own decisions based on their own risk tolerance and reduce their risk by using personal protective measures like masks, social distancing and vaccinations, she said. .
“While resurgence is still possible, particularly as public health measures ease, the increasing availability and rapid application of these tools can help mitigate the impact on hospitals,” Tam said.
“Additionally, they can help protect our most vulnerable populations and minimize the need for large-scale restrictive measures in the future.”
—Laura Osman, The Canadian Press