Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Thursday December 17, 2020

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Thursday, December 17, 2020:

  • There have been 146,535 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 2,139 (or 1.5 per cent) from the previous day. There are 125,416 people recovered from the virus while 4,035 people have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 7,108,489 of which 65,597 have pending results.
  • Canada’s coronavirus case total is 481,630. The country has 13,799 deaths from the virus – one in the Yukon, 692 in British Columbia, 760 in Alberta, 98 in Saskatchewan, 523 in Manitoba, 4,035 in Ontario, 7,613 in Quebec, eight in New Brunswick, four in Newfoundland & Labrador and 65 in Nova Scotia.
  • The Eastern Ontario Health Unit region added 19 cases on Wednesday to bring the total confirmed cases to 1,153, of which 329 are active (four fewer than Tuesday) and 792 are resolved (32 more than Tuesday). There were 14 in Prescott-Russell, two in SD&G, two in Cornwall and one in Akwesasne. The number of deaths is 32. Six people are in hospital, including two in ICU (ICU up one from the previous day). There are 13 active outbreaks (includes nursing and retirement homes, lodging homes, group homes, schools and daycare). Testing increased by 549 to 89,536. The breakdown of cases is: Prescott-Russell 689 cases (165 active), SD&G 230 cases (101 active), Cornwall 195 cases (61 active) and Akwesasne (ON/QC) 39 cases (two active).
  • The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit added six new cases on Wednesday to bring the regional total to 613 confirmed cases, of which 62 are active (one fewer than Tuesday) and 498 are recovered (five more than Tuesday). The number of deaths to date is 53. There is one active institutional outbreak (child care at St. Edward’s School). The community case breakdown is: Leeds-Grenville East (five active), Leeds-Grenville Central (eight active), Leeds-Grenville West (37 active), Lanark County West (seven active) and Lanark County East (four active).
  • Nurses and health care workers in four more provinces were in line Wednesday to get the COVID-19 vaccine. They were giving shots in Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, PEI and Manitoba, where an ICU doctor received the first shot in the friendly province.
  • While not approved by Health Canada yet, the country’s deputy health minister says preparations are underway to accept and distribute the Moderna vaccine. The drug will be able to be transported to remote locations as it doesn’t need to be stored in ultra-deep cold.
  • A health care worker in Alaska had a severe allergic reaction to the Pfizer-BioNTech shot within 10 minutes of receiving it. They were flushed and short of breath and had to be treated with epinephrine and other drugs for anaphylaxis. There have been similar reports of severe allergic reactions in the United Kingdom.
  • Toronto Mayor John Tory says the current regional lockdown isn’t good enough to stop the spread of COVID-19. Tory is talking with neighbouring regions about further lockdowns during the holidays. He says people are not staying home like they did in the spring.

Have a story or news release related to COVID-19? Send it along for possible inclusion in a future digest on Cornwall Newswatch. Email Please put “COVID-19 Digest” in the subject line.