Montreal-based study estimates Quebec saw up to 32,000 new daily COVID-19 cases last week | Globalnews.ca


There have been between 18,000 and 32,000 new COVID-19 infections per day final week throughout Quebec, based on an estimate launched Friday by a Montreal-based analysis centre.

The outcomes of the examine by CIRANO ought to make Quebecers take the sixth wave of the pandemic significantly, Roxane Borges Da Silva, a professor at Université de Montréal’s faculty of public well being who labored on the analysis, stated in an interview.

The Quebec authorities, she added, ought to strengthen its messaging on COVID-19 and rethink its plan to elevate masks mandates in mid-April.

“It’s a really vital rise — non-negligible and worrisome — particularly for individuals who are susceptible to COVID and to well being staff,” she stated.

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The precise case counts offered within the examine, which seemed on the interval from March 24-29, are tough to verify, she stated, however the tendency is obvious: the info signifies an increase in circumstances of between 20 per cent and 40 per cent over the earlier week. The analysis centre, which consists of teachers from varied universities, surveys 3,000 folks per week to ask in the event that they’ve acquired a constructive COVID-19 consequence.

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Borges Da Silva stated she worries the leap in circumstances might affect the health-care system, particularly as a result of circumstances are rising most shortly in locations exterior main cities, the place hospital capability is diminished.

“At 20,000 circumstances per day, even when it’s 0.001 per cent of people that find yourself in hospital out of 20,000 circumstances, it’s nonetheless lots of people,” she stated.

On Friday, the Quebec authorities stated there have been greater than 11,000 well being staff off the job attributable to COVID-19, up from the 8,600 introduced throughout a authorities information convention final Sunday.

“The shortage of (labour) and the numerous enhance within the variety of health-care staff who’ve contracted COVID in latest weeks are affecting the supply of care,” the Well being Division wrote in an e mail.

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Quebec Well being Minister Christian Dubé has stated the province just isn’t planning to reimpose public well being restrictions. The leap in circumstances was anticipated, Dubé stated Thursday, including that Quebecers must study to handle their very own threat.

Borges Da Silva stated the federal government just isn’t contemplating new restrictions probably as a result of it is aware of extra concerning the Omicron mutation than it did through the fifth wave within the winter, when it imposed a curfew and closed many companies. She stated different causes embody the very fact extra Quebecers are vaccinated now in contrast with the winter and that European international locations haven’t seen huge surges of sufferers in hospitals.

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“They’re additionally making an allowance for that it’s been two years that we’ve been in a pandemic and that there are an infinite quantity of (financial) sectors which have suffered,” she stated.

As a public well being knowledgeable who additionally considers the psychological well being side of restrictions, she says she understands the necessity to keep away from extra closures. She says, nevertheless, the federal government has gone “from one excessive to a different” and hasn’t achieved sufficient to induce folks to watch out, to isolate on the first signal of signs and to hunt booster photographs.

Quebec also needs to push again its plan to elevate masks mandate in mid-April, she added. “The masks is a measure that’s cheap, not very restrictive, however very efficient,” she stated. “But when we take it off, we’ll have hassle bringing it again.”


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