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COVID-19 in Quebec: What you need to know on Friday

  • On Wednesday, Quebec reported 1,562 people in the hospital (a drop of 37 from the previous day), including 53 in intensive care (a rise of five from the previous day).
  • The province reported 626 new cases of COVID-19 and 14 deaths.
  • There have been 1,060,045 since the beginning of the pandemic confirmed cases and 15,326 people have died.
  • The province also reported 5,039 healthcare workers who were absent for COVID-related reasons.
  • 91 percent of the province’s eligible population (aged five and older) has received at least one dose of the vaccine; 55 percent received a third dose and 13 percent received a fourth dose.

*The new cases were only reported to the Quebec government. They are believed to underrepresent the spread of the virus given the limited availability of PCR tests and the use of home testing kits.

*The Quebec Department of Health stopped reporting COVID-19 numbers over the weekend.

Quebec’s vulnerable seniors in long-term care found themselves in the government’s blind spot in the spring of 2020 as COVID-19 emerged, coroner Géhane Kamel told reporters Thursday.

Kamel released a 200-page report on Monday after hearing testimonies from 220 government officials, nursing home workers and relatives of those who died.

The majority of the deaths examined in the inquiry – 47 in total – occurred between March 12 and May 1, 2020 at CHSLD Herron in Dorval.

“People have failed at Herron,” Kamel said on Thursday, “whether it’s the owners, the health authority or the ministry. That’s clear to me. I wrote it in black and white. People passed on the buck.”

The report issued 23 recommendations addressed to the provincial government, the Department of Health, local health authorities and the Quebec College of Physicians.

Kamel urged the province to find ways for its healthcare system to respond more quickly in times of crisis, saying the current structure leaves too much distance between the ministry’s bureaucrats, who issue guidelines, and the people who work on the ground.

Montreal lifts the state of emergency

The city of Montreal officially lifted its COVID-19 state of emergency on Thursday.

The state of emergency, Montreal’s second declared during the pandemic, had been in effect since last December.

The city said the improving COVID-19 situation coupled with high vaccination rates means it no longer needs emergency powers.

Plante said back in December that the state of emergency would be used to quickly source protective equipment for the city’s key workers and prepare sites and facilities to accommodate Montreal’s homeless population.

Quebec’s mask mandate has ended

Quebec became the first province in Canada to impose a mask mandate following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, and on Saturday it became the latest province to allow residents to remain maskless in most indoor public spaces.

Quebecers are no longer required to wear masks in most indoor public spaces. The province’s mandatory mask mandate has been in effect for a total of 21 consecutive months since July 2020.

Most indoor places in a Quebecer’s daily life no longer require a mask, including grocery stores, gyms and restaurants. Masks are still required on public transport and in hospitals. The Health Ministry said on Friday that taxis are considered public transport and passengers are required to wear masks.

Top stories on COVID-19

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

  • Fever.
  • New or worsening cough.
  • difficulty breathing.
  • Sudden loss of smell without a stuffy nose.
  • Gastrointestinal problems (such as nausea, diarrhea, vomiting).
  • Sore throat
  • Generalized muscle pain.
  • Headache.
  • Fatigue.
  • loss of appetite.

Information on COVID-19 in the province can be found here and information on the situation in Montreal can be found here.

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