'Circuit-breaker' measures imposed to stop COVID-19 surge in New Brunswick

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HALIFAX — The New Brunswick government is imposing a series of tough health-protection measures to stop a surge in COVID-19 cases that is straining the province's health-care system.

Among other things, Premier Blaine Higgs said today family gatherings during the Thanksgiving long weekend must be limited to single households.

As well, the province's new plan calls for a set of so-called circuit-breaker measures that will be imposed on three areas of the province that have recorded the highest hospitalizations and death rates. Measures include gathering limits and restrictions on travel.

The areas affected by the new health order include the upper Saint John River Valley and Edmundston in western New Brunswick and the Moncton area in the province's southeastern region.

Health officials are reporting 90 new cases of the disease today and one more death attributed to the novel coronavirus.

The province is dealing with 782 active cases of COVID-19, triple the amount of cases in neighbouring Nova Scotia.

As well, Higgs confirmed there are 50 people recovering in hospital, including 23 receiving intensive care — a caseload that has led to cancelled surgeries and other health-related backlogs.

Among those in hospital, 82 per cent are unvaccinated.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 5, 2021.

Michael MacDonald, The Canadian Press

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