Ottawa, Oct 31 (IANS) Canadians have been urged to cut their contacts in an effort to stem Covid-19 spread amid an ongoing second wave of the pandemic in the country, according to health authorities.
In a statement, the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) on Friday said that despite additional restrictions being re-imposed in regions where the Covid-19 spread has spiked in past months, after surpassing the previous round of projected maximum cases and deaths, reports Xinhua news agency.
Canada is on track to see thousands of new cases and hundreds of new deaths by November 8, the PHAC said in its “Update on Covid-19 in Canada: Epidemiology and Modelling”.
So far, Canada has registered a total of 230,547 Covid-19 cases and 10,100 deaths.
By the end of next week, the case count is on track to increase to between 251,800 and 262,000 cases and deaths between 10,285 and 10,400, according to the modelling.
“We need to keep our contacts as limited as possible. This is what it will take to slow the spread of the virus,” said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during the press conference.
“When you’re thinking of seeing people outside your household, ask yourself: ‘is this absolutely necessary?’ I know the situation is frustrating. I know it’s hard, but it is temporary. If we work together, cases will go down again,” Trudeau said.
Also on Friday, Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam said: “If we maintain our current rate of contacts, the epidemic is forecast to resurge, and a decrease of 25 per cent would mean that the spread would come under control in most locations.”
Tam appealed to people to avoid gatherings with people outside of their “consistent, trusted contacts” and to take all other social interactions virtual.
Over the last two weeks, higher rates of infection are being reported, Covid-19 patients are being hospitalized at a higher rate than was seen over the summer, and deaths are also gradually increasing.
Rates of Canadians under the age of 40 contracting the virus remain the highest, but an increase in new cases is occurring across age groups. Outbreaks are also continuing to be reported in the highest rates at long-term care and retirement residences; at schools and child-care centres; and as a result of social gatherings, said the PHAC.