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COVID-19 cases in Quebec climb to 39 as premier asks non-essential establishments to close

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WATCH: Coronavirus around the world: March 16, 2020

The Quebec government is asking non-essential businesses to close their doors as cases of the novel coronavirus continue to rise in the province.

As of Sunday, there have been 39 confirmed cases including one child. 1,186 people are under investigation and awaiting their test results while 1,890 tests have come back negative.

At a press conference on Sunday, Premier François Legault asked that establishments including bars, cinemas, gyms, ski hills and more, close indefinitely.

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Coronavirus outbreak: Quebec premier urges bars, movie theatres to close, restaurants to reduce capacity – Mar 15, 2020

Legault also asked that restaurants in the province limit their capacity to 50 per cent and seat parties far apart.

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“I understand that I am asking a lot from Quebecers, but this is the best way to limit the spread [of the virus],” the premier said.

The government is also asking companies to allow employees to work remotely and that all seniors over 70 stay home.

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Child care offered to certain essential service workers

Quebec’s Education Minister Jean-François Roberge also announced on Sunday that due to school and daycare closures, “essential care service workers” can drop off their children at special emergency child care centres, for free.

Starting Monday, 400 sites will be open and located near health services across the province.

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Coronavirus outbreak: Quebec to help essential care service workers via emergency child care centres – Mar 15, 2020

The government clarified that “essential care service workers” includes healthcare employees, police officers and firefighters.

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The child care centres will welcome children aged 4 to 13. The government asks that concerned parents register their children and get more information here, but added that the centres will accept last minute drop-offs without registration.

The Sainte-Justine Hospital received the first child case of coronavirus in the province Saturday, spokesperson Florence Meney confirmed.

The minor is said to have returned with family from Europe and was at home in isolation.

Concerned about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing – very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend social distancing, frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. And if you get sick, stay at home.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.

— With files from The Canadian Press

Click to play video 'Quebec premier asks that all non-essential businesses close' Quebec premier asks that all non-essential businesses close
Quebec premier asks that all non-essential businesses close – Mar 15, 2020