The latest news on COVID-19 developments in Canada on Wednesday, June 16, 2021

·6 min read

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

6:35 p.m.

British Columbia health officials say the province ranks among the highest in the world for the number of people who have their first shot of the COVID-19 vaccine.

They say more than 76 per cent of eligible people have received their first dose of the vaccine while 710,847 have got their second shot.

The province reported 113 new cases of COVID-19 for a total of 146,674.

It also recorded four COVID-19-related deaths for a total of 1,738 fatalities.

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5:45 p.m.

Alberta is reporting 153 new cases of COVID-19 and four more deaths.

The province says 255 people are in hospital, with 67 of those patients in intensive care.

Fifty of the new cases are the more contagious COVID-19 variants of concern.

The province also says there are 2,639 active cases and, of those, 1,903 are variants of concern.

Since the pandemic began, 2,278 people in Alberta have died from the virus.

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4:10 p.m.

New Brunswick is moving into Phase 2 of its reopening plan.

Premier Blaine Higgs says the change will occur at midnight, opening travel without the need to isolate to all of Nova Scotia after opening to P.E.I. and Newfoundland and Labrador on Wednesday.

Travellers from elsewhere in Canada who have had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine will be allowed into the province without the need to isolate, while those who haven't had a shot will have to isolate and produce a negative test before being released from quarantine.

Officials reported three new COVID-19 cases today and 58 active cases -- the lowest active case count since March.

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3:35 p.m.

Saskatchewan is reporting 74 new cases of COVID-19 today, and two more people have died.

One of the people who died was in the 80+ age group in the northwest zone of the province, and the other was in their 70s in Saskatoon.

Seventy-six more people have recovered, leaving the province with 726 active cases.

The highest numbers of active cases are in the Saskatoon and Regina zones, and the province is reporting no active cases in the far north central region.

The province is also reporting 92 people in hospital, including 12 in intensive care.

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1:35 p.m.

Manitoba is reporting 144 new COVID-19 cases and seven deaths.

It's the fourth consecutive day that case counts have been below 200.

The five-day test-positivity rate continues to drop, and stands at 9.7 per cent provincially and 9.2 per cent in Winnipeg.

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1:10 p.m.

Three-quarters of eligible Canadians are now partly vaccinated against COVID-19.

Vaccinations given on Tuesday were enough to push Canada over 24.75 million first doses, the first target on the pathway out of the pandemic.

Federal modelling this spring suggested if 75 per cent of eligible Canadians got their first dose, and at least 20 per cent were fully vaccinated, we can safely start to loosen public health restrictions.

When 75 per cent of eligible Canadians have both doses, we will be able to start being less strict about personal protections like social distancing and face masks.

Close to 5.5 million people now have their second dose, or almost 17 per cent.

There will be enough vaccine delivered to get a second dose to 75 per cent of Canadians by the end of July.

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12:50 p.m.

Manitoba has expanded eligibility for second doses in the general population to anyone who received a first dose on or before May 14.

Health officials say that benchmark will be moved to May 18 tomorrow.

All Indigenous Manitobans over aged 12, and persons with certain underlying medical conditions, can already book second doses.

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12 p.m.

Manitoba is hoping to have everyone aged 12 and up eligible for second doses of COVID-19 vaccines by the end of next week.

Health officials say two large shipments of Moderna vaccine, expected this week and next, will allow the province to administer more than 20,000 doses per day.

The province is planning to allow more walk-ins at vaccinations sites, to make it easier for people who don't want to book an appointment in advance.

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11:55 a.m.

Nova Scotia is reporting eight new cases of COVID-19 today.

Health officials say five cases are in the Halifax area and three have been identified in the eastern health zone which includes Cape Breton.

The province has 92 known active cases while there are five people in hospital, including four in intensive care, as a result of the virus.

The province says 715,070 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered as of Tuesday, with a total of 58,854 people having received their booster shot.

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11:45 a.m.

Newfoundland and Labrador is reporting one new case of COVID-19 today.

Chief medical officer of health, Dr. Janice Fitzgerald, says the case involves a person between 30 and 49 years old and is travel-related.

The province has 35 known active cases of novel coronavirus and there is no one currently in hospital as a result of being infected.

Fitzgerald says as of Monday 72 per cent of people eligible have had at least one shot of COVID-19 vaccine and it's anticipated the province will reach the 75 per cent mark later this week.

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11:25 a.m.

The Quebec government is reporting 153 new cases of COVID-19 and one additional death due to the pandemic.

Hospitalizations fell by 17 to 192, while the number of people in intensive care dropped by five to 45.

The province also added another 87,000 vaccine doses to its total, for a grand sum of nearly 7 million doses administered.

The province has 1,606 active cases.

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10:30 a.m.

Ontario reports there are 384 new cases of COVID-19 in the province and 12 more deaths linked to the virus.

Health Minister Christine Elliott says there are 71 new cases in Waterloo, 60 in Peel Region and 54 in Toronto.

The Ministry of Health says that 438 people are in hospital with the novel coronavirus — 377 in intensive care and 242 on a ventilator.

Premier Doug Ford says Ontario administered a record high of nearly 203,000 vaccine doses since Tuesday's report, for a total of more than 11.7 million doses given out so far.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 16, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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