Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Tuesday August 31, 2021

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Tuesday, August 31, 2021:

  • There have been 565,025 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 694 cases from the previous day (403 unvaccinated, 73 partially, 167 fully vaccinated, 51 unknown). There have been 549,499 people recovered from the virus while 9,498 have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 17,208,945 of which 6,973 have pending results.
  • Canada’s coronavirus case total is 1,496,256. The country has 26,918 deaths from the virus – eight in the Yukon, one in the Northwest Territories, four in Nunavut, 1,814 in British Columbia, 2,371 in Alberta, 601 in Saskatchewan, 1,189 in Manitoba, 9,498 in Ontario, 11,285 in Quebec, 46 in New Brunswick, seven in Newfoundland & Labrador and 94 in Nova Scotia.
  • The Eastern Ontario Health Unit area added 25 cases Monday from the weekend – nine in Prescott-Russell, seven in SD&G and nine in Cornwall – to bring the regional total to 4,854 confirmed cases, of which 56 are active (15 more than Friday) and 4,686 are resolved (10 more than Friday). The number of deaths is at 112. There is one person in hospital in the ICU. There are no institutional outbreaks. Testing increased 171 to 150,698. The breakdown of cases is: Prescott-Russell 2,026 cases (24 active), SD&G 1,155 cases (14 active), Cornwall 1,313 cases (15 active) and Akwesasne (ON/QC) 360 cases (three active).
  • The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit area added seven cases on Monday to bring the regional total to 1,813 confirmed cases, of which 11 are active (two more than Friday) and 1,742 are recovered (five more than Friday). There are 60 deaths to date. There is no one in hospital. There are no active institutional outbreaks. The community case breakdown is: Lanark County East 394 cases (six active), Lanark County West 415 cases (one active), Leeds-Grenville Central 215 cases (two active), Leeds-Grenville East 357 cases (two active), Leeds-Grenville West 205 cases (zero active) and Unknown 19 cases (zero active).
  • Vaccines: Ontario 20,726,778 (+17,767, last update Aug. 30); EOHU 293,493 (last update Aug. 30, +2,347 from previous update Aug. 27); LGL 140,100 individuals living in LGL with first doses, 130,431 with second doses (last update Aug. 24, +1,001 first doses, +3,054 second doses since previous update Aug. 17).
  • EOHU Medical Officer of Health Dr. Paul Roumeliotis says their next goal is to get just over 2,700 more needles into arms to reach 85 per cent of the eligible population vaccinated. Right now, it’s at 83.5 per cent. Roumeliotis says it’s “encouraging” to see anywhere from 100 to 200 first doses being given daily in the region.
  • Roumeliotis is concerned that cases are “peaking up again” after 25 newly diagnosed coronavirus cases were recorded over the weekend. The R-naught – the reproductive average – has risen to 0.68 and the positivity rate is 0.8 per cent which is still below the provincial average. Of the 56 active cases, 48 were people not fully vaccinated and Roumeliotis says most of the 48 actually didn’t have a single shot. Eight were so-called breakthrough cases in fully vaccinated residents.
  • People in Quebec with comprised immune systems or on dialysis are being recommended to get a third dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. The Quebec Health Department made the recommendation Monday following advice from the immunization committee. Long-term care patients are not on the list.
  • Vaccination cards or QR codes for proof of vaccination will be made available to Manitoba residents even if they don’t have a provincial health card. The move will open up eligibility to international students and people from other countries.
  • A class-action lawsuit filed in Ontario against 14 insurance companies that denied business interruption claims due to COVID-19 has been certified by the Ontario Superior Court. The claims were apparently denied because the coverage requires physical loss or damage to property.
  • The European Union is recommending its 27 member countries reinstate travel restrictions for Americans due to rising coronavirus cases in the USA. It’s not a binding recommendation, meaning U.S. residents can expect a patchwork of travel rules.

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