Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Friday May 28, 2021

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Friday, May 28, 2021:

  • There have been 527,180 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 1,135 cases from the previous day. There have been 501,942 people recovered from the virus while 8,697 have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 15,103,437 of which 23,068 have pending results.
  • Canada’s coronavirus case total is 1,371,073. The country has 25,411 deaths from the virus – two in the Yukon, four in Nunavut, 1,690 in British Columbia, 2,199 in Alberta, 534 in Saskatchewan, 1,042 in Manitoba, 8,697 in Ontario, 11,115 in Quebec, 43 in New Brunswick, six in Newfoundland & Labrador and 79 in Nova Scotia.
  • The Eastern Ontario Health Unit area added 17 cases Thursday – 10 in Prescott-Russell, four in SD&G and three in Cornwall – to bring the regional total to 4,776 confirmed cases, of which 130 are active (11 more than Wednesday) and 4,543 are resolved (six more than Wednesday). The number of deaths is at 103. There are five people in hospital with two in the ICU (no change). There are zero active institutional outbreaks. Testing increased by 128 to 139,286. The breakdown of cases is: Prescott-Russell 2,008 cases (66 active), SD&G 1,136 cases (34 active), Cornwall 1,282 cases (27 active) and Akwesasne (ON/QC) 350 cases (three active).
  • The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit area added three cases Thursday to bring the regional total to 1,743 confirmed cases, of which 34 are active (two more than Wednesday) and 1,649 are recovered (one more than Wednesday). There are 60 deaths to date. One person is in hospital. There are no active institutional outbreaks. The community case breakdown is: Lanark County East 382 cases (seven active), Lanark County West 392 cases (four active), Leeds-Grenville Central 207 cases (seven active), Leeds-Grenville East 344 cases (13 active) and Leeds-Grenville West 196 cases (three active).
  • Vaccines: Ontario 8,530,698 (+143,748, last update May 27); EOHU 102,834 (last update May 27, +7,243 from previous update May 26); LGL 65,686 individuals with at least 1 shot (last update May 25, +7,850 from previous update May 17).
  • With the EOHU crossing the 100,000 mark for vaccinations, local Medical Officer of Health Dr. Paul Roumeliotis says 60 per cent of the adult population have been at least partially vaccinated. At this rate, he says the area should be over 80 per cent partially vaccinated by the third or fourth week of June.
  • A decision on going back to school could be coming shortly. EOHU Medical Officer of Health Dr. Paul Roumeliotis cut his 4:15 p.m. semi-weekly media briefing short Thursday for a 4:30 p.m. provincial meeting on school closures. The doctor says his “best bet” would be schools would reopen in days to in-class learning. “I’m not sure if the schools could reopen in time next week, middle of next week or the following week” but there is “a lot of agreement” among medical professionals that “there are many benefits” that outweigh the risks of kids going back to class, he said.
  • The length of time between the first and second coronavirus vaccine shots in British Columbia is decreasing. The province is moving to eight weeks given the ample supply of Moderna and Pfizer doses. It had been 16 weeks.
  • Over two dozen critical care patients have been transferred out of Manitoba to Ontario in the last week-and-a-half as the province grapples with the third wave of the pandemic. A four week mission by the military kicks off today.
  • A government advisory panel is recommending the Trudeau government stop its hotel quarantine policy for returning travellers because it’s expensive, inconsistent and full of loopholes. In some cases, travellers are skipping out on the stay, choosing to pay the maximum $3,000 fine instead.
  • New Brunswick has a road map to reopening that would see all restrictions lifted by Aug. 2. Like other provincial reopening plans, the three-step plan is tied to vaccination targets.
  • Canada has had a total to 27 confirmed cases of people developing blood clots after taking the AstraZeneca vaccine. Another 14 cases are under investigation. Five people have died from the symptom known as VITT. Canada’s deputy chief public health officer shared the figures Thursday.
  • Self-employed Canadians who received the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) won’t have to repay any of it, provided their income was less than $5,000, they earned more than $5,000 gross in the year prior to applying and they filed their 2019 and 2020 tax returns.
  • One of the unseen real voices of the 1990s lip-synching group Milli Vanilli has died after contracting COVID-19. John Davis was 66.

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