Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Friday December 3, 2021

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Friday, December 3, 2021:

  • There have been 620,229 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 959 cases from the previous day (VAX: 446 unvaccinated, 23 partially vaccinated, 429 fully vaccinated, 61 unknown). There have been 603,285 people recovered from the virus while 10,012 have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 19,850,181 of which 17,333 have pending results.
  • Canada’s coronavirus case total is 1,798,872. The country has 29,737 deaths from the virus – 14 in the Yukon, 12 in the Northwest Territories, four in Nunavut, 2,345 in British Columbia, 3,257 in Alberta, 928 in Saskatchewan, 1,324 in Manitoba, 10,012 in Ontario, 11,583 in Quebec, 130 in New Brunswick, 18 in Newfoundland & Labrador and 110 in Nova Scotia.
  • The Eastern Ontario Health Unit added 10 cases Thursday – one in Prescott-Russell, four in SD&G and five in Cornwall – to bring the regional total to 6,098 confirmed cases, of which 98 are active (three more than Wednesday) and 5,869 are resolved (seven more than Wednesday). The number of deaths to date is 131. There are three people in hospital (no change from Wednesday) and one in the ICU (no change from Wednesday). There is one institutional outbreak (no change from Wednesday). Testing increased 214 to 173,977. The breakdown of cases is: Prescott-Russell 2,289 cases (eight active), SD&G 1,428 cases (34 active), Cornwall 1,868 cases (37 active) and Akwesasne (ON/QC) 513 cases (19 active)(Akwesasne health department reported nine new cases Thursday: 576 total cases, 22 active, nine deaths to date).
  • The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit added six cases Thursday to bring the regional total to 2,090 confirmed cases, of which 27 are active (one more than Wednesday) and 1,999 are recovered (five more than Wednesday). The number of deaths to date is 64. There are three people in hospital (one fewer than Wednesday) and two in the ICU (no change from Wednesday). There are no active institutional outbreaks. The community case breakdown is: Lanark County East 453 cases (four active), Lanark County West 478 cases (seven active), Leeds-Grenville Central 265 cases (seven active), Leeds-Grenville East 416 cases (four active), Leeds-Grenville West 243 cases (four active) and Unknown/Out of Region 28 cases (one active).
  • Vaccines: Ontario 22,978,037 (+27,129, last update Nov. 30, data was not available Dec. 2 due to PHO technical issues); EOHU 341,606 (last update Dec. 2, +840 from previous update Dec. 1); LGL 152,741 individuals living in LGL with first doses, 148,736 with second doses, 7,793 with third doses. (last update Nov. 28, +1,105 first doses, +817 second doses, +2,400 third doses since previous update Nov. 23).
  • Booster shot availability is being expanded across Ontario. The provincial government announced Thursday that appointments for a third dose for those 50 years old and older (born in 1971 or before) can been booking through the Ontario vaccine portal, starting Monday, Dec. 13 at 8 a.m. It has to be roughly five and a half months since your second dose (168 days) to be eligible to book. Those who are receiving dialysis or who are certain transplant recipients can book now if it’s been 56 days since their second dose. (This bullet was corrected at 9:30 a.m. Friday to reflect 168 days, not 156).
  • The EOHU has rolled out an online education course for local businesses to help with their vaccination policy. The course, which the health unit says is a key component of any policy, is used for people who voluntarily choose not to get vaccinated.
  • A health unit in the GTA has found another case of the Omicron variant. Halton Public Health says one person is confirmed with the virus and there are two other suspected cases. The health unit in the Durham Region also has one Omicron case.
  • The Yukon plans to lift some health restrictions this weekend, such as proof of vaccination at religious services, minor-aged sports and personal services like hairdressers and barbers. The territory recorded its 14th death Thursday.
  • The White House has changed the rules on testing for air passengers coming into the United States. Now, travellers will need a test no later than 24 hours before they board. The previous period was 72 hours. The measures are meant to stop the spread of the Omicron variant.

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