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Too soon to know if Canada's COVID-19 case decline will continue, Tam says

Last Updated Jan 24, 2021 at 1:13 pm PST

People arrive to be tested for COVID-19 at a clinic in Montreal, Sunday, January 24, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes

MONTREAL — Canada’s chief public health officer says it’s still too soon to know whether the recent downward trend in new COVID-19 cases will continue.

Dr. Theresa Tam says there’s been an improvement in the COVID-19 numbers in B.C., Alberta, Ontario and Quebec but the disease is regaining steam elsewhere.

She says it appears local health measures may be starting to pay off, but it’s not clear whether they’re strong and broad enough to continue to sustain progress.

Some long-standing virus hot spots have made headway in lowering the number of new cases in recent weeks, but are still fighting outbreaks and flare-ups as they race to vaccinate vulnerable communities.

The federal public safety minister announced today that the Canadian Armed Forces will support vaccine efforts in 32 First Nations communities in northern Ontario.

Quebec, meanwhile, reported a fifth straight decline in the number of hospitalizations as the health minister urged citizens to keep following health measures.