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Concerns grow as COVID-19 case counts rise across Canada

Last Updated Sep 8, 2020 at 2:19 pm PDT

FILE -- Specimens to be tested for COVID-19 are seen at a lab, in Surrey, B.C., on Thursday, March 26, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Summary

Daily numbers of COVID-19 have increased about 25 per cent over the last two weeks: Dr. Theresa Tam

Canada's chief public health officer says she's concerned about the recent uptick in COVID-19 cases; urges vigilance

Experts continue to warn that large, indoor gatherings are in part fueling the increase

TORONTO – We are at a COVID-19 crossroads in Canada. With four days of numbers set to be released later Tuesday in Victoria, British Columbians can expect hundreds of new cases.

This comes as Canada’s top doctor warns, with new infections on the rise, we could be heading for a second wave this fall.

Chief Public Health Officer of Canada Dr. Theresa Tam says with the average daily numbers increasing some 25 per cent over the last two weeks, Canadians need to be reminded not to get complacent about the risk of contracting COVID-19.

“This is a concern and a reminder that we all need to maintain public health measures to keep COVID-19 on the slow-burn path that we need,” Tam said in a statement.

While she noted most Canadians are following public health advice, Tam said she’s concerned about the uptick in cases.

“As we enter the fall, Canadians will need to be even more vigilant about following public health guidance, particularly as the cold weather shifts activities indoors,” she said.

Quebec just reported its highest case count in three months, with 216 new COVID-19 infections confirmed on Monday. Meanwhile, Ontario has reported at least 100 new daily cases for two weeks.

B.C. recorded its second highest single-day COVID-19 case total on Friday. That was the last provincial update ahead of the long weekend.

It was just a day earlier that Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry warned that B.C. was at a critical point in the effort to bend the COVID-19 curve back down.

“We’re at that limit, we’re at that precipice, if you will, where we need to take the actions to ensure that we can move forward into the fall and keep our curve low,” Henry said on Thursday.

Experts continue to warn that large, indoor gatherings are fueling the increase, along with young people who just aren’t following the rules.

-With files from Mike Hall and Hana Mae Nassar