Coronavirus: What’s Happening in Canada and Around the World on Friday
With the latest wave of COVID-19 showing few signs of slowing down, concerns are mounting as more workers in vital industries are sidelined by the pandemic.
In Ontario, where the number of hospitalized COVID patients has increased fivefold in just two weeks to 2,279, many hospitals are reporting massive staff absences due to COVID-19 diagnoses.
And while the 300 COVID-19 patients in intensive care units are paltry compared to the peak of the third wave of the pandemic, when 900 people infected with the virus were in intensive care, that does not mean that workers in the people breathe more easily, said Anthony Dale, president of the Ontario Hospital Association.
“We still have some very, very sick people. We still have a huge number of people admitted to intensive care,” Dale said. “I don’t know where the ceiling will be.”
Outbreaks in long-term care homes across the province have resulted in staff absences by 20-30% in some areas as the highly infectious Omicron variant of COVID increases the number of cases
In Quebec the government says about 20,000 healthcare workers are unemployed after testing positive or exposed to the virus. And four federal prisons in the province now say they are “very close” to experiencing staff shortages for the same reason.
Quebec health authorities on Thursday reported 1,953 hospitalizations related to COVID-19 and 26 additional deaths.
New Brunswick hospitals say they too are struggling with staffing issues due to coronavirus infections.
The healthcare industry is not alone in its struggles, as organizations across the country struggle to meet staffing needs as people fall ill or become isolated from exposure. Businesses in all industries face similar challenges, as do governments.
Police forces in Edmonton, Calgary and Winnipeg, for example, face similar staffing challenges, as do Winnipeg Transit, GO Transit in Ontario, and the Prince Rupert Fire Department in northwestern Ontario. British Columbia.
-From The Canadian Press, last updated 8 a.m. ET
What’s happening across Canada
With a deeply strained and increasingly constrained laboratory testing capacity, experts say the actual number of cases is likely much higher than reported. Regional hospitalization data is also changing, with several provinces saying they will report numbers that separate the number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 from those hospitalized for another medical condition who also test positive for COVID-19. .
For more information on what’s going on in your community, including details on outbreaks, testing capacity, and local restrictions, click on the regional coverage below.
You can also read more about the Public Health Agency of Canada, which provides a detailed overview of each region – including seven-day mean test positivity rates – in his daily epidemiological updates.
In the north, Nunavut Premier PJ Akeeagok warned on Thursday that workers in critical areas of the territory were “close to breaking point” as the province grapples with Omicron, staff shortages and health system strain.
“The staff are exhausted, balancing work and child care, which is not sustainable for many,” he said, as he pleaded with the day care operators.
In Atlantic Canada, Newfoundland and Labrador Health officials on Thursday reported four hospitalizations and no additional deaths. The province, which has recorded 503 laboratory-confirmed cases, faces significant pressure on the health system as large numbers of health workers are out of work, sick or isolated.
Health officials in New Scotland – which on Thursday reported 48 hospitalizations, no additional deaths and 745 laboratory-confirmed cases – has decided to restrict visitors to some hospitals as they grapple with COVID-19 outbreaks.
New Brunswick, meanwhile, recorded one more death and 63 hospitalizations on Thursday, as provincial health officials urged residents of the province to receive their booster dose as soon as they are eligible. The province, which has yet to lower the age of eligibility to under 50 in the general population, said Thursday there were 672 more laboratory-confirmed cases.
In Prince Edward Island, the province’s provincial health director on Thursday announced changes to the isolation protocol, as the province reported four people were hospitalized with COVID-19, and three others were in hospital for other reasons that had tested positive. The province, which has not reported any COVID-19-related deaths, has recorded 204 additional laboratory-confirmed cases.
In the Prairie provinces, hospitalizations in Manitoba rose to 263, health officials reported Thursday, as they announced six more deaths. The province, which has recorded an additional 2,548 laboratory-confirmed cases, is facing staffing challenges in several key sectors, including home care and local government.
In Saskatchewan, The province’s top doctor on Thursday urged people not to gather as the province reported one more death and 100 hospitalizations. The province, which has recorded 913 new laboratory-confirmed cases, is developing contingency plans for increased pressure on health systems, the health authority said.
In alberta, Health officials on Thursday reported three additional deaths and 498 hospitalizations. The province recorded an additional 4,869 lab-confirmed cases – a new high in a single day, even with limited access to lab tests.
In British Columbia, Health officials on Thursday reported three additional deaths and 324 hospitalizations. The province, which has recorded an additional 3,223 laboratory-confirmed cases, is bracing for a staffing shortage in schools as students prepare to return to in-person learning.
-From CBC News and The Canadian Press, last updated 8 a.m.ET
What is happening in the world
As of Friday morning, around 300.3 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported worldwide, according to the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Tracker. The death toll worldwide stood at more than 5.4 million.
In Europe, British troops are deploying to London hospitals struggling to cope with ‘exceptional’ staff shortages amid the surge in COVID-19 cases fueled by the Omicron variant. The Defense Ministry said on Friday it was sending some 40 military medics and 160 general service staff to fill staffing gaps caused by National Health Service staff who are either sick or self-isolating. amid the surge in coronavirus cases in the capital.
In the Americas, Argentina and Brazil continued to report record peaks in daily cases, as Mexico braced for a grim death milestone, even as several countries rushed to vaccinate residents amid doubts over lasting effects of booster doses.
In the Asia Pacific region, Thailand has announced it is tightening some entry restrictions while expanding its “sandbox” quarantine program, and urged people to follow social distancing and mask rules to control the spread of COVID- 19 powered by the omicron variant. The government has not announced any lockdowns, but has issued restrictions on alcohol consumption in restaurants. He also called on people to avoid public gatherings, public transport and travel across the country. Most schools will remain open, while bars and nightclubs will remain closed.
In Africa, health officials in South Africa on Thursday reported 9,860 more cases and 551 more deaths, although health officials noted the significant increase in reported deaths was “due to the ongoing audit exercise conducted by provinces across the country to address a backlog of COVID-19 deaths and new cases.”
In the Middle East, the United Arab Emirates reported 2,687 more cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, with no additional deaths reported.
-From The Associated Press, Reuters and CBC News, last updated 7:50 a.m. ET