New Brunswick to restore state of emergency as province reports record COVID-19 cases, three more deaths

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HALIFAX – New Brunswick will return to a state of emergency as the province continues to tackle the growing fourth wave of COVID-19, officials said on Friday.

“The situation we are currently facing in New Brunswick is indeed serious. That is why, on the advice of public health, the cabinet is reestablishing a state of emergency and issuing a binding order starting at 11:59 pm tonight, ”Premier Blaine Higgs said.

During Friday’s update, Higgs announced that the following restrictions will be in place starting at 11:59 p.m. Friday.

All previously announced public health measures remain in place. The following additional measures will be implemented within the framework of the mandatory decree:

  • People should limit their contacts to their household plus 20 consistent contacts.

  • Private indoor gatherings will be limited to 20 consistent contacts.

  • There will be no limit to outdoor gatherings, as long as physical distancing is maintained.

  • Businesses and events where people congregate or exercise, including museums, cinemas, theaters, bingo halls, casinos, entertainment centers, arenas, arcades, Pool halls, live entertainment venues, weddings, funerals, gymnasiums, yoga studios and the like must ensure that all employees are fully vaccinated or are masked at all times and tested regularly. Customers and attendees attending such events should always be fully immunized.

  • Physical distancing is required in businesses, services or events where proof of vaccination is not required, such as grocery and retail stores, private businesses and libraries.

Places of worship have the option of ensuring that all participants present full proof of vaccination or of implementing the following measures:

  • operate at 50 percent of its capacity;

  • maintain a physical distance;

  • ensure continued use of the mask;

  • register the names of all participants or have assigned seats;

  • eliminate singing from services; and

  • prevent anyone with symptoms of COVID-19 and those who have been ordered to self-isolate from entering.

“It is unfortunate to return to a state of emergency, however, it is necessary,” Higgs said. “We need to slow the spread of COVID-19 and ensure that the number of hospitalizations does not continue to increase.”

Higgs also announced that in the future the province will return to a state of emergency at any time, more than 25 people will be hospitalized in the province.

“We have to do this because of the pressure this number of hospitalizations places on our health care system. As hospitalizations decline, the mandatory prescription and public health measures will remain in place to ensure our hospitalizations stabilize, ”Higgs said.

Higgs said there are currently 31 people in hospital, including 15 patients in an intensive care unit. Of the 31 patients, 27 or 87% are not fully vaccinated.

“We knew there would be more cases of COVID-19 after the mandatory order was lifted at the end of July. But the pace of this fourth wave is exceeding what we expected, ”added Dr. Jennifer Russell, New Brunswick’s Chief Medical Officer of Health in Friday’s update.

Russell says that last week the province had an average of 67 new cases per day, with hospital admissions increasing by an average of one patient per day.

“It is clear that our current situation is very serious,” said Russell. “Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we have acted to protect New Brunswickers. We have also taken action to preserve the health care system on which we all depend. We have not hesitated to take action to limit the spread of this virus, and we will not hesitate now. “

THREE DEATHS, 78 NEW CASES ON FRIDAY

New Brunswick health officials reported three COVID-19-related deaths on Friday, bringing the total number of people who have died from the virus to 52.

In Friday’s update, Dr. Jennifer Russell announced that a 70-year-old from the Moncton area, an 80-year-old from the Moncton area and a 90-year-old from the Moncton area ‘Edmundston are deceased.

Russell also announced a single-day record of 78 new cases on Friday, as well as 76 recoveries, as the province’s active number of cases stands at 573.

According to health officials, 59 of the 78 new cases as of Friday, or 76%, are not fully immunized.

“If you are still not vaccinated, you may think that this disease will not affect you because of your age or your current health. But the biggest risk affects us all equally, and that is the risk COVID-19 presents to our health care system, ”said Russell.

In a technical briefing on Friday, Horizon Health Network’s senior infectious disease specialist said the province was wrong when the decision was made to lift all health protection measures on July 30. .

“All of us in this room right now, with the evidence for this rapid rise in Delta virus in the province, we will all agree that was not the right decision to make,” Dr Gordon Dow said at the technical briefing. Friday.

“Many other jurisdictions have made the same mistake. Alberta made the mistake, except it did it a month before us. Saskatchewan made the mistake. The United States made the mistake. The UK made the mistake. Many mistakes were made. “

Dow says senior health officials in the province can all agree that it was a mistake to lift all restrictions when there was ample evidence at the time to suggest that the rapid spread of the highly contagious Delta variant would envelop the province by fall.

New Brunswick recorded 866 cases this month, nearly a quarter of the total reported since the pandemic began in March 2020.

The province’s chief COVID-19 epidemiologist said each case recorded in September generated an average of 1.5 more cases.

Dr Mathieu Chalifoux also said more than 85 percent of cases in September were linked to the Delta variant.

DISTRIBUTION OF CASES

Eight new cases were reported in the Moncton area (Zone 1) involving:

  • two people in their twenties

  • three people in their thirties

  • two people in their forties

  • a person in their sixties

Three cases are under investigation, three are contacts of previously confirmed cases and two are travel-related cases.

Six new cases were reported in the Saint John area (Zone 2) involving:

  • a person 19 years of age and under

  • a person in their twenties

  • a person in their forties

  • a person in their fifties

  • two people in their sixties

Three cases are under investigation and three are contacts of previously confirmed cases.

Twenty-eight new cases have been reported in the Fredericton area (Zone 3) involving:

  • seven people aged 19 and under

  • five people in their twenties

  • three people in their thirties

  • four people in their forties

  • four people in their fifties

  • two people in their sixties

  • three people in their sixties

Sixteen cases are under investigation and 12 are contacts of previously confirmed cases.

Twenty-two new cases were reported in the Edmundston region (Zone 4) involving:

  • 11 people aged 19 and under

  • two people in their twenties

  • two people in their thirties

  • four people in their forties

  • two people in their fifties

  • a person in their sixties

Thirteen cases are under investigation and nine are contacts of previously confirmed cases.

Thirteen new cases have been reported in the Campbellton area (zone 5) involving:

  • four people aged 19 and under

  • a person in their twenties

  • two people in their thirties

  • three people in their forties

  • two people in their fifties

  • a person in their sixties

Eight cases are under investigation and five are contacts of previously confirmed cases.

A new case has been reported in the Miramichi area (Zone 7), involving a person in their 60s, which is under investigation.

COVID-19 CASE DATA

New Brunswick has recorded 3,707 cumulative cases of COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic.

A total of 3,081 people have recovered and 52 people have died in the province from COVID-19.

Public health says a total of 448,802 COVID-19 tests have been processed since the start of the pandemic.

The number of cases is distributed according to the seven health zones of New Brunswick:

  • Zone 1 – Moncton area: 978 confirmed cases (137 active cases)

  • Zone 2 – Saint John area: 371 confirmed cases (30 active cases)

  • Zone 3 – Fredericton area: 776 confirmed cases (187 active cases)

  • Zone 4 – Edmundston region: 925 confirmed cases (97 active cases)

  • Zone 5 – Campbellton region: 376 confirmed cases (89 active cases)

  • Zone 6 – Bathurst region: 190 confirmed cases (21 active cases)

  • Zone 7 – Miramichi region: 91 confirmed cases (12 active cases)

UPDATING THE VACCINE

As of Thursday, 78.6 percent of New Brunswickers aged 12 and over were fully immunized and 87.4 percent had received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

A total of 1,155,893 doses of vaccine were administered in New Brunswick.

All eligible New Brunswickers can make an appointment now for their second dose for a date that is at least 28 days after their first dose.

POTENTIAL PUBLIC EXHIBITIONS

Anyone showing symptoms of the virus, as well as anyone who has been to the site of a possible public exhibition, is invited to request a test online or to call Tele-Care at 811 for an appointment.

This is a developing story and will be updated.


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