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The latest developments on COVID-19 in Canada on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021

The latest developments on the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada (all times eastern): 7:15 p.m. British Columbia has recorded 559 new cases and one more death from COVID-19. The province has had 1,336 fatalities since the start of the pandemic.

The latest developments on the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada (all times eastern):

7:15 p.m.

British Columbia has recorded 559 new cases and one more death from COVID-19.

The province has had 1,336 fatalities since the start of the pandemic.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says B.C. is in a phase of "vaccine hope and pandemic reality" as the government expects to start informing people over age 80 next week about when they will be vaccinated.


5:30 p.m.

Alberta is reporting 267 new COVID-19 infections in its latest update, along with 11 additional deaths from the virus.

Chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw says there were 6,300 tests done in the past day and that 4.4 per cent came back positive.

There are 326 COVID-19 patients in Alberta hospitals, including 51 in intensive care.

Anyone born in 1946 and earlier will be able to book an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine starting on Wednesday.

So far, 107,000 Albertans have received at least one dose and 73,000 have been fully immunized.


3:10 p.m.

Nova Scotia health officials are reporting three new cases of COVID-19, and say lab results have identified three more cases of the U.K. variant.

The three variant cases are unrelated to the three new cases and involve two people in the Halifax area who travelled together, and one person in the western zone who is not connected to the pair that travelled.

The people were tested earlier this month and their cases are being reinvestigated.

Officials have identified a total of six U.K. variant cases, while the province has an overall total of 20 active infections.


2:55 p.m.

Saskatchewan is reporting its first cases of COVID-19 variants with no links to travel.

Health officials say the strain first identified in the United Kingdom was found in two residents in the Regina area.

The mutation from South Africa was also discovered in the province's north central region, and public health is still investigating.

Officials also believe there is a presumptive case of the U.K. strain from an acute care patient transferred to Saskatoon from out of province.

The province also announced 122 new cases of COVID-19 and four more deaths.

Officials say there are 174 people in hospital, with 16 people in intensive care.

To date, around 62,000 vaccine doses have been administered.


1:35 p.m.

Manitoba health officials are announcing no new COVID-19 deaths today and 76 new cases. 

However, the province has also removed eight COVID-19 cases due to data correction, so the net increase is 68. 

Health officials are advising of a possible exposure on a Perimeter Aviation flight, from Garden Hill to St. Theresa’s Point and Winnipeg, on the morning of Feb. 17.


1:20 p.m.

Quebec will begin vaccinating its general population aged 85 years and older starting next week.

Premier Francois Legault says anyone born in 1936 or before can begin registering for an injection on Thursday.

Legault says authorities will focus on vaccinating people in the greater Montreal area because of the high number of infections in the region.

He made the announcement at Montreal’s Olympic Stadium, the site of one of the province’s future mass vaccination clinics.


1 p.m.

New Brunswick is reporting no new cases of COVID-19 today.

Health officials say the number of active reported cases is 75 and two patients are in hospital with the disease, including one in intensive care.

The province has reported a total of 1,424 infections and 26 deaths linked to the novel coronavirus.


12:55 p.m.

Health authorities in Newfoundland and Labrador are reporting 15 new cases of COVID-19.

Officials say all of the new infections involve people in the eastern health region, where an outbreak has been spreading through the metro St. John’s area.

Authorities say 50 people have recovered from the virus since Monday, and there are now 372 active reported cases of COVID-19 across the province.

Five people are in hospital because of the disease, and officials say two of those people are in intensive care.


12:30 p.m.

Canada's chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam says she is hopeful provinces and territories will be able to start relaxing the most invasive public health measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 before September.

Neither Tam nor Intergovernmental Affairs Minister Dominic LeBlanc will put a specific date on the move to lift restrictions.

But LeBlanc says the government has noted that British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he'd like all restrictions lifted in the U.K. by June 21.

They say the decision rests with provinces but Tam says early vaccine results are very encouraging and she is hopeful the need for the most restrictive public health measures will diminish before the fall.


11:10 a.m.

The Quebec government is announcing 739 new cases of COVID-19 and 13 additional deaths linked to the pandemic.

Hospitalizations declined by nine to 680, but intensive care numbers increased by three to 120.

One death previously attributed to COVID-19 was found to be unrelated, for a total of 10,330 deaths and 283,666 infections in the province since the pandemic began.

Premier François Legault and Health Minister Christian Dubé are expected to outline the province’s plan for mass vaccination later today at a news conference.


11:05 a.m.

The Manitoba government says one of the people enforcing COVID-19 public health orders was assaulted while on duty last week.

The province says the incident happened in Winnipeg and is currently under investigation.

Officials say 27 tickets were issued last week, most of them related to gatherings in private homes or outdoors.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 23, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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