HALIFAX — Health officials in Nova Scotia reported nine new cases of COVID-19 on Friday and four more recoveries from the disease, as another university strengthened its vaccination requirements.
Four of the cases are in the Halifax area and three are in the province's western zone. The remaining two cases are in the northern and eastern zones.
Six new cases are related to travel and three involve close contacts of previously reported infections.
The province has 55 active reported cases and no one in hospital with the disease.
About 70.6 per cent of all Nova Scotians are fully vaccinated, with the province aiming to have 75 per cent vaccinated by Sept. 15 in order to go on to the final phase of its reopening plan, which would drop most existing restrictions.
Meanwhile, Saint Mary's University announced that is was beefing up its COVID-19 vaccination requirements.
In a news release, the Halifax school said it will now require all faculty, staff and students to be vaccinated by Oct. 15.
Earlier this month, the university said student-athletes, coaches and students living in residence would need to be fully vaccinated. Under the updated plan, anyone who is not fully vaccinated or refuses to provide proof of vaccination will have to undergo testing for the virus twice a week.
Saint Mary's said it will start collecting vaccine records no later than Sept. 3 "to ensure the community is ready for the return of classes."
The university joins other post-secondary institutions in Nova Scotia that have adopted similar policies, including Dalhousie University, Cape Breton University, Mount Saint Vincent University and the Nova Scotia Community College.
St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish said in a release Thursday it will conduct a survey to determine the vaccination status of all staff, faculty and students.
The school said it has started consultations with union leaders and the students union to bring in a mandatory testing policy for all students, staff and faculty who aren't fully vaccinated.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 27, 2021.
The Canadian Press