N.B. COVID-19 roundup: Province reports 44th death, 16 new cases

·17 min read
Dr. Jennifer Russell, chief medical officer of health, encourages New Brunswickers to get tested for COVID-19, to get vaccinated if they are eligible and to continue to follow Public Health measures. (Government of New Brunswick  - image credit)
Dr. Jennifer Russell, chief medical officer of health, encourages New Brunswickers to get tested for COVID-19, to get vaccinated if they are eligible and to continue to follow Public Health measures. (Government of New Brunswick - image credit)

New Brunswick recorded another COVID-related death Thursday and 16 new cases.

A person in their 70s in the Fredericton region, Zone 3, has died as a result of COVID-19, Public Health said in a news release.

"On behalf of all New Brunswickers, I offer my sympathies to everyone who is grieving this loss," Health Minister Dorothy Shephard said in a statement.

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Jennifer Russell also offered condolences.

"We all have the power to reduce new cases further. Get tested, get vaccinated and continue to follow public health guidance," she said.

The new cases put the province's total active cases at 146.

Four people are hospitalized in New Brunswick, including one in an intensive care unit. One New Brunswicker is also hospitalized out of province in an intensive care unit.

The 16 new cases of COVID-19 reported Thursday put the province's total active cases at 146.
The 16 new cases of COVID-19 reported Thursday put the province's total active cases at 146.(CBC)

Here is the breakdown of the new cases:

Moncton region, Zone 1, three cases:

  • Two people 40 to 49.

  • A person 50 to 59.

All three cases are contacts of previously confirmed cases.

Fredericton region, Zone 3, five cases:

  • Two people 19 and under.

  • A person 40 to 49.

  • Two people 50 to 59.

Four cases are contacts of previously confirmed cases and is under investigation.

Bathurst region, Zone 6, eight cases:

  • A person 40 to 49.

  • Three people 50 to 59.

  • Four people 60 to 69.

Seven cases are contacts of previously confirmed cases and one is under investigation.

A total of 339,506 tests had been conducted, including 1,092 on Wednesday.

New Brunswick has had 2,243 confirmed cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic began, with 2,052 recoveries.

Walk-in vaccine clinics offered in push for 75% target

Getting a COVID-19 vaccine in New Brunswick got a bit easier Thursday with the regional health authorities offering several walk-in clinics over the next few days.

The province wants to encourage as many people as possible to get their first dose by midnight Monday, as part of its path to green.

If 75 per cent of the eligible population aged 12 or older have received their first dose by then, Phase 1 of the reopening plan will kick in and Public Health measures will start to loosen.

On Thursday, 8,798 more first doses were recorded on the province's COVID-19 dashboard, putting the first dose vaccination rate at 65.8 per cent.

This brings the seven-day average down slightly to 7,585 from Wednesday's 7,663, according to Oliver Dueck, a software developer based in Fredericton who has been tracking the province's vaccine data for the past few months.

But he still predicts it will be June 12 before the province hits its 75 per cent target, unless vaccinations ramp up.

New Brunswick still has more than 63,00 people to vaccinate by Monday to reach its Phase 1 goal.
New Brunswick still has more than 63,00 people to vaccinate by Monday to reach its Phase 1 goal.(Robert Short/CBC)

Health Minister Dorothy Shephard remains optimistic.

"We're going to push for that last-minute rush. We're ready. We have the vaccines. We have the vaccinators," she said.

The province is going to use social media and local radio stations to promote the walk-in clinics and encourage people to take advantage of the "easy process."

"We're going to drive for 75."

If it doesn't happen Monday, Shephard believes it will on Tuesday or Wednesday.

She expects the province will know by Sunday night, based on the rate and scheduled appointments, and will let people know.

"Look, I have a brother who's a truck driver, and he sent me a note, 'Am I going to be free to go on Monday?'" she said, referring to the fact that if the province reaches its target, truckers and cross-border commuters will no longer be subject to testing and isolation requirements.

Other changes will include a partial Atlantic bubble, and businesses, including restaurants, gyms and salons, will be permitted to operate at regular capacity.

"We know people are ready for this and they want it," Shephard said.

Health Minister Dorothy Shephard said the province is 'considering all options' to reach its vaccination goal by Monday.
Health Minister Dorothy Shephard said the province is 'considering all options' to reach its vaccination goal by Monday.(Ed Hunter/CBC)

On Wednesday, Premier Blaine Higgs told reporters he believes it's "going to be tight," but "certainly possible" to reach the goal. He said he wanted to make it more convenient for people to get their shots.

The province is "considering all options," said Shephard.

Although it doesn't have a plan for drive-thru vaccination clinics yet, "Public Health is looking at any and all ways to maximize the opportunity to get vaccinated."

If the province falls short of its target Monday, it won't proceed with loosening restrictions, Shephard told reporters. "I don't think we want to lower the bar." The changes will be delayed.

Shephard noted the younger age groups haven't had as much time as the older age groups to get their vaccinations. People aged 12 to 17 have only been eligible since May 26 and those 18 and older, since May 18.

"I've seen lots of photos in the last couple of days of families going with young children and teenagers. And so we need to allow that to happen," she said.

"I believe we'll exceed 75 per cent. It's just this time constraint."

Asked why the province chose June 7 as the deadline, Shephard replied: "We knew we were close. And so I believe that always people will respond to targets.

"So the goal is to inspire New Brunswickers to get vaccinated, to start loosening restrictions so that we can all enjoy our family and friends the way we want to."

The Horizon Health Network is offering the following walk-in clinic today:

Fredericton region, Zone 3:

  • Brookside Mall, 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Horizon also has availability by appointment only at the following clinics:

  • Fredericton-area: Friday and Saturday (ages 12 and older).

  • Saint John area: Saturday (ages 18 and older) and Sunday (ages 12 and older).

  • Miramichi area: Saturday and Monday (ages 12 and older).

"We all have a role to play in the fight against COVID-19," Horizon said in a statement. "By receiving the first dose of the vaccine, New Brunswickers are doing their part and working to achieve our path to green."

The Vitalité Health Network is offering the following first-dose vaccination clinics:

Moncton region, Zone 1:

Moncton Coliseum

  • June 3: (Pfizer) with or without appointment from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

  • June 5: (Pfizer) with appointment / without appointment to be confirmed

  • June 7: (Moderna) with appointment

J.K. Irving Centre in Bouctouche

  • June 4: (Pfizer) with or without appointment from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Tantramar Veterans Memorial Civic Centre in Sackville

  • June 5: (Pfizer) with appointment

Edmundston region, Zone 4:

Saint-Jacques Knights of Columbus Hall

  • June 5: (Pfizer) with or without appointment from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

  • June 7: (Moderna) without appointment from 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

E.&P. Sénéchal Center in Grand Falls

  • June 4: (Pfizer) with appointment

Auberge Évasion des Rêves in Saint-Quentin

  • June 3: (Pfizer) with appointment

Campbellton region, Zone 5:

Campbellton Regional Hospital

  • June 3, 4 and 7: (Pfizer)

Charlo Golden Age Club

  • June 5: (Pfizer) with appointment

Bathurst region, Zone 6:

K.C. Irving Centre in Bathurst

  • June 4: (Pfizer) with appointment

  • June 6: (Pfizer) with or without appointment

Acadian Peninsula Convention Center

  • June 7: (Moderna) with or without appointment

People can book an appointment online through the Horizon or Vitalité clinics or by contacting a participating pharmacy.

47 doses ditched in part due to no-shows

A total of 47 COVID-19 vaccine doses had to be thrown away following a clinic at the Moncton Coliseum last week, due in part to people failing to show up for their appointments, says the Vitalité Health Network.

It was a combination of no-shows and an unexpected surplus when more vaccine was extracted from the vials that had been opened, said vice-president Jacques Duclos.

A new fridge has now been installed to help avoid future wastage, he said.

Vitalité vaccination clinics face roughly between 10 and 20 no-shows every day, but they are usually filled quickly, said Duclos.

The regional health authorities are encouraging people to show up for their appointments or cancel after nearly 50 vaccines went to waste last week. The province is striving to meet its Monday target to have 75 per cent of the eligible population vaccinated with their first dose.
The regional health authorities are encouraging people to show up for their appointments or cancel after nearly 50 vaccines went to waste last week. The province is striving to meet its Monday target to have 75 per cent of the eligible population vaccinated with their first dose.(Evan Mitsui/CBC)

Earlier this week the Horizon Health Network issued a news release, seeking support to eliminate no-shows at vaccination appointments as the province works toward its 75 per cent vaccination rate goal.

It said some residents are double-booking their vaccination appointment and not cancelling one of them. "By cancelling an appointment you no longer need, you are providing access for other New Brunswickers awaiting their vaccine."

Horizon was unable to provide any double-booking statistics on Thursday. But of the clinics held May 17-31 in the Saint John and Fredericton areas, it recorded a no-show rate of three per cent.

This means that of the 32,871 appointments booked during that period, a total of 1,017 people did not attend, said Jean Daigle, vice-president of community

"While the vast majority of those who book their appointments are – enthusiastically and promptly – attending as scheduled, with so many New Brunswickers still waiting their turn to be vaccinated, it's very important that those who book multiple appointments remember to cancel the ones they don't plan to attend," he said in an emailed statement.

Questionnaire for residents vaccinated out of province

The province is asking snowbirds and other residents who were vaccinated out of province and have returned to New Brunswick to voluntarily complete a questionnaire so they can be counted toward its 75 per cent vaccination goal.

Residents who registered with the New Brunswick Travel Registration program will receive an email within the next 24 hours, Public Health announced Thursday afternoon. They will be invited to complete a questionnaire, confirming whether they received a dose of a COVID-19 vaccine while outside the province.

If people do not hear from Public Health by Friday at noon, they are asked to contact their local Public Health office.

Outbreak over at special care home in Grand Falls

A COVID-19 outbreak at Pavillon Beau-Lieu, a special care home in Grand Falls, in the Edmundston region, Zone 4, has been officially declared over, Public Health announced Thursday.

Staff and residents of the home were retested several times to confirm the end of the outbreak, according to a news release.

The outbreak had been declared on April 21 after a positive case was confirmed at the 60-bed home.

Six residents died during the outbreak, which involved the variant of concern first reported in South Africa.

After more than six weeks and at least 53 positive cases of COVID-19, the outbreak at Pavillon Beau-Lieu special care home has been deemed officially over.
After more than six weeks and at least 53 positive cases of COVID-19, the outbreak at Pavillon Beau-Lieu special care home has been deemed officially over.(Submitted by Madeleine LeClerc )

Four of them had received at least one dose of a COVID vaccine, and one had received both doses, the Department of Health had said. No details about the vaccine history of the sixth person were released.

At least 38 residents and 15 staff had tested positive, as of May 18.

Atlantic COVID roundup

Nova Scotia reported 25 new cases Thursday, and confirmed its youngest COVID-related death to date, a man in his 30s. The province has 273 active cases.

Newfoundland and Labrador announced six new cases of COVID-19 for a total of 90 active cases.

Prince Edward Island has two new cases to report, and six active cases.

Latest public exposures

Public Health has identified numerous new potential public exposures to the coronavirus in 10 communities, so many that it stopped listing them individually in its daily news release Wednesday, opting instead to list only the communities. These include:

  • Pointe-Sapin in Zone 1 (Moncton region)

  • Oromocto in Zone 3 (Fredericton region)

  • Fredericton in Zone 3 (Fredericton region)

  • Saint-Quentin in Zone 4 (Edmundston region)

  • Petite-Rivière-de-I'lle in Zone 6 (Bathurst region)

  • Tracadie in Zone 6 (Bathurst region)

  • Lamèque in Zone 6 (Bathurst region)

  • Haut-Lamèque in Zone 6 (Bathurst region)

  • Shippagan in Zone 6 (Bathurst region)

  • Miramichi in Zone 7 (Miramichi region)

A detailed list of the potential exposures, including the locations and dates, is available on the government's COVID-19 website. It is updated regularly.

Public Health is offering COVID-19 testing to anyone who has been in a public exposure area, even if they are not experiencing any symptoms. Residents may request a test online or call Tele-Care 811.

People experiencing one or more symptoms are also encouraged to get tested.

Previous public exposures

Public Health previously reported the following potential public exposures:

Fredericton region:

  • RV Insurance, 111 King. St, Woodstock, on May 14.

  • Carquest, 68 Scott St., Hartford, on May 14, May 15 and May 25.

  • Murray's Irving, 198 Beardsley Rd., Beardsley, on May 15.

  • Canadian Tire, 1110 Smythe St., Fredericton, on May 15.

  • Nackawic Grab N Go Irving, 467 Route 105, on May 18, on May 24, and May 25.

  • Tow Tech Equipment, 150 Main St., Bath, on May 20.

  • Zealand Grab N Go Irving, 104 Zealand Rd., on May 22.

  • River Valley Automotive, 445 Route 105, Nackawic, on May 26.

  • Kedmar Ventures Ltd., 4669 Route 105, Upper Queensbury, on May 28.

  • Terry LeClair Auto Body Towing, 4818 Route 105, Nackawic, May 13-May 28.

  • Kent Building Supplies, 809 Bishop Dr., Fredericton, on May 23 between noon and 5 p.m

  • Lincoln Big Stop, 415 Nevers Rd., Waasis on May 26, between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m.

  • Irving, 1769 Lincoln Rd., Fredericton, on May 26, between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m.

  • Sobeys, 375 Miramichi Rd., Oromocto, on May 28, between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.

  • Canadian Tire, 345 Miramichi Rd., Oromocto, on May 28, between 10 a.m. and noon.

  • Sobeys, Miramichi Road, Oromocto, on May 25 between 11 a.m. and 1p.m.

  • Shoppers Drug Mart, 1198 Onondaga St, Oromocto, May 23 between 10 a.m. and 12 p.m.

  • Dollarama, Oromocto Mall, May 23 between 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.

  • Atlantic Superstore, Oromocto Mall, May 23 between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.

  • Day & Ross Freight Terminal, 11187 Route 130, Somerville, May 22

  • Kingswood Entertainment Centre, 1700 Kingswood Way, Hanwellm on May 22 between 4 p.m. and 9 p.m.

  • Service New Brunswick, 432 Queen St., Fredericton, May 21 between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m.

  • Day & Ross Freight Terminal, 398 Main St., Hartland, on May 21

  • Day & Ross, 414 York St., Fredericton, on May 18,19 and 21

  • Costco, 25 Wayne Squibb Blvd., on May 21, between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m.

  • The Head Shoppe, 1381 Regent St., Fredericton, on May 21 between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m.

  • Dollarama, 1033 Prospect St., on May 21, between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m.

  • Giant Tiger, 1160 Smythe St., on May 21 between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m.

  • Day & Ross Freight Terminal, 398 Main St., Hartland, May 17-20

  • Downtown Optometry Clinic, 169 Dundonald St., Fredericton, May 20 between 4:30 and 8 p.m.

  • Naturally Fit Gym, 125 NB-105, Lower Saint-Mary's, May 20 between 5 p.m. and 11:59 p.m.

  • Capt. Submarine/Irving Oil, 305 Route 110, West Florenceville, on Thursday, May 20, between 2:30 p.m. and 5 p.m.

  • Atlantic Superstore, 116 Main St., Fredericton on Wednesday, May 19, between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.

  • Aldo Shoes, 1381 Regent St., on May 19, between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.

  • Le Château, 1381 Regent St., on May 19, between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.

  • Lawtons Drugs, 1381 Regent St., on May 19 and May 20, between 3:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.

  • Home Depot, 1450 Regent St., Fredericton, Wednesday, May 19, between 5 and 7 p.m.

  • Fadi's Pizza, 312 Main St., Fredericton on Tuesday, May 18, between noon and 2 p.m.

  • Fredericton Regional Centre, 300 St. Mary's St., on Tuesday, May 18, and Wednesday, May 19, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

  • Petro Canada, 20 Royal Rd., Fredericton, on Tuesday, May 18, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

  • Fredericton YMCA daycare, 570 York St., Fredericton, on Tuesday, May 18, and Wednesday, May 19

  • The Reps Gym, 401 Connell St., Woodstock, on May 17 to May 19 between 8 p.m. and midnight.

  • Capitol Building, 114 Queen St., Woodstock, on May 17 to May 19.

  • Scholten's, 325 Sunset Dr., Fredericton, on May 17 between 4 and 8 p.m.

  • Walmart, 125 Two Nations Crossing, Fredericton on Monday, May 17, between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m.

  • Dollarama, 125 Two Nations Crossing, Fredericton on Monday, May 17, between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m.

  • Sobeys Fast Fuel, 530 Brookside Dr., Fredericton on Monday, May 17, between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m.

  • Walmart Supercentre, 1399 Regent St., Fredericton on Sunday, May 16, between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.

  • Shoppers Drug Mart, 1040 Prospect St., Fredericton on Sunday, May 16, between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m.

  • Christ Church (Parish) Church, 245 Westmorland St., Fredericton, Sunday, May 16, 10:30 a.m. service.

  • Hope City Church, 429 Clements Dr., Fredericton, on Sunday, May 16, 9:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. services.

  • Atlantic Superstore, 116 Main St., Fredericton, on May 16 between 9 and 11 a.m.

  • Crowne Plaza Fredericton, 659 Queen St., Fredericton, on May 15 between 3 p.m. and May 16 at noon.

  • Crowne Plaza Fredericton, 659 Queen St., between 3 p.m. on Saturday, May 15, and noon on Sunday, May 16.

  • Castle Building Supplies, 24B Columbus St., Perth-Andover, on May 14 between 7:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., and May 20 between noon and 5:30 p.m.

  • Arthurette General Store, 1450 Route 109, Red Rapids, on May 11 between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m., May 16 between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., and May 21 between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m.

  • Save Easy, A-24 Columbus St., Perth-Andover, on May 11, May 14, May 15, and May 21 between 8 a.m. and 9 p.m.

Moncton region:

  • DJ Marine, 3107 Route 117, Pointe-Sapin, May 25-May 28.

  • Saint Pierre Catholic Church, 2000 Route 535, Cocagne, on Sunday, May 23, 11 a.m. service.

  • Day & Ross Freight Terminal, 651 Frenette Ave., Moncton, on May 20 and May 22.

  • Wendy's Restaurant, 85 Harrisville Blvd., Moncton, on May 22 between noon and 8 p.m.

  • TD Bank, 525 Regis St., Dieppe, on May 22 between 8:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.

  • Moxie's Grill and Bar, 10 Wyse St., Moncton, on May 21 between 9:30 a.m. and 7 p.m.

  • Tim Hortons, 750 St. George Blvd., Moncton, on May 21 between 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. and May 23 between 8 a.m. and noon.

  • A&W, 6 Champlain St., Dieppe, on May 21 between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.

  • Codiac Transpo City Bus #60, on May 21 between 7:45 a.m. and 11 a.m.

  • Codiac Transpo City Bus #51, on May 21 between 7:15 p.m. and 10 p.m.

  • Subway, 100 Morton Ave., Moncton, on May 19 between 8:30 a.m. and 9:15 a.m.

  • Extreme Windows, 80 Loftus St., Moncton, on May 18, May 19, May 20 and May 21 between 7:30 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Edmundston region:

  • Tim Hortons, 54 Canada St., Saint-Quentin, on May 16, between 3:30 and 5:30 p.m.

Bathurst region:

  • Tim Hortons, 1420 Vanier Blvd., Bathurst, on May 16, between 5 and 7 p.m.

What to do if you have a symptom

People concerned they might have COVID-19 symptoms can take a self-assessment test online.

Public Health says symptoms shown by people with COVID-19 have included:

  • Fever above 38 C.

  • New cough or worsening chronic cough.

  • Sore throat.

  • Runny nose.

  • Headache.

  • New onset of fatigue, muscle pain, diarrhea, loss of sense of taste or smell.

  • Difficulty breathing.

In children, symptoms have also included purple markings on the fingers and toes.

People with one of those symptoms should:

  • Stay at home.

  • Call Tele-Care 811 or their doctor.

  • Describe symptoms and travel history.

  • Follow instructions.

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