N.B. ranks about middle among provinces in latest COVID-19 numbers roundup

·4 min read
New Brunswick had the fifth highest rates of COVID cases and deaths in Canada last week and the fourth highest positivity rate, federal figures show.  (Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press - image credit)
New Brunswick had the fifth highest rates of COVID cases and deaths in Canada last week and the fourth highest positivity rate, federal figures show. (Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press - image credit)

New Brunswick sits about the middle of the pack for new COVID-19 cases, deaths and positivity rates, while P.E.I. is in the worst spot among the provinces and territories, according to the latest figures from the federal government.

New Brunswick had the fifth highest rate of COVID-19 cases in the country last week, as the Omicron subvariants BA.5 and BA.4 continue to fuel a summer surge, the figures released on Friday show.

The province's rate of cases for the week ending July 16 was 127 per 100,000, according to Health Canada's website.

That's about one and a half times the national average of 82 cases per 100,000 people.

But it's significantly better than the rates in two of the other Atlantic provinces.

Government of Canada
Government of Canada

P.E.I. leads the country at a jaw-dropping 925 cases per 100,000, while Nova Scotia ranks a distant second at 180. Newfoundland and Labrador is seventh at 69.

There are signs of improvement though.

New Brunswick's rate last week is 51 per cent lower than its rate over that week and the previous week combined. Its rate of cases for the weeks of July 03 to July 16 is 260 cases per 100,000, earning it the fourth highest spot in the country.

The national average over that two-week period is 152 cases per 100,000.

P.E.I. and Nova Scotia still ranked first and second in Canada, but with much higher numbers — 1,645 and 343 cases per 100,000 respectively. Newfoundland and Labrador placed sixth with 149 cases per 100,000.

Deaths from COVID-19

For rate of COVID deaths in the latest week, New Brunswick tied with B.C. for fifth place at 0.6 per 100,000 people.

That's higher than the national average of 0.5 per 100,000.

P.E.I. leads the country in this category too at 1.3 deaths per 100,000 people, while Newfoundland and Labrador is third at 0.8 and Nova Scotia, fourth at 0.7.

Again, these rates are all lower than compared to the two-week period.

When the week of July 3 is included, New Brunswick's rate is 1.1 per 100,000, putting it in fourth place, tied with Newfoundland and Labrador.

The national two-week rate is 0.9.

P.E.I. ranks second highest in the country at 1.6, after Quebec's rate of 1.8 per 100,000 people.

Nova Scotia ties with B.C. for third spot at 1.3.

Positivity rates, tests performed

New Brunswick ranks fourth for positivity rate. The moving average of PCR (polymerase chain reaction) lab test per cent positivity in the seven days leading up to July 19 is 21.1 per 100,000.

Canada's rate is 16.1.

Just a couple of months ago New Brunswick had the highest COVID-19 test positivity rate in the country; more than double the national average.

The province's rate in the seven days leading up to May 10 was 29.7, compared to Canada's average of 12.7.

P.E.I. and Nova Scotia have the first and second highest rates in the country for the past week at 33.3 and 31.6 per 100,000 respectively, while Newfoundland and Labrador is in eleventh spot with a rate of 8.1.

Alexandre Silberman/CBC
Alexandre Silberman/CBC

New Brunswick is also fourth when it comes to the moving average of daily PCR lab tests performed for the week ending July 19, with a rate of 98 per 100,000 people.

That's better than the national average of 79, according to the website.

Newfoundland and Labrador's rate is nearly double that and highest in the country at 155.

Meanwhile, Nova Scotia is third in the country for testing, with a rate of 99 per 100,000, and P.E.I. is tenth, with a rate of 23 per 100,000.

'Increased activity' continues

New Brunswick recorded five more COVID-19 deaths in the past week, raising its pandemic death toll to 438.

Thirty people were newly admitted to hospital because of the virus between July 10 and July 16, up from 15 the previous week, according to the province's weekly COVIDWatch report Tuesday.

Kyle Gree/The Associated Press
Kyle Gree/The Associated Press

Horizon and Vitalité health networks report having 114 hospitalized COVID patients as of Saturday, four of whom require intensive care.

But the province, which only reports on people who are hospitalized because of the virus, not those who were initially admitted for another reason and later tested positive, says 22 people are in hospital, including one in intensive care.

There were 2,324 new cases of COVID reported — 1,004 confirmed through a PCR lab test and 1,320 self-reported by people who tested positive on rapid tests.

A total of 93.3 per cent of eligible New Brunswickers have received their first does of a COVID-19 vaccine, 88.3 per cent have received their second dose, 53 per cent have received their third dose and 23 per cent of New Brunswickers aged 50 or older have received their fourth dose.

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