Canada added another 630 new coronavirus cases Thursday, continuing an upward trend as schools fully reopen to students across the country.
Excluding Wednesday, the country has now reported over 600 new cases daily for a full week, a feat not seen since early June.
Eight new deaths were also reported Thursday — five of them in Alberta — bringing the death toll to 9,163. There have now been a total of 134,827 lab-confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus to date, 118,990 of whom have fully recovered.
Thursday saw British Columbia report a new record high in daily cases with 139, although no new deaths have occurred since Wednesday. There have now been 6,733 confirmed cases and 213 deaths, while an additional 97 cases are considered “epidemiologically linked.”
The province — once seen as a success story in managing the pandemic — is continuing to see a troubling growth in cases that began in August, prompting new restrictions on some businesses.
Alberta announced 113 new cases and five deaths, including a man in his 20s — the second time a patient that young has died in the province. Those deaths bring the death toll to 253, out of a total of 15,304 cases.
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Saskatchewan and Manitoba reported six and 15 new cases, respectively, with no new deaths in either province. Saskatchewan has seen 1,676 cases and 24 deaths to date, while Manitoba’s total now sits at 1,378 cases and 16 deaths.
Ontario saw an increase of 170 cases Thursday and a new death, bringing the province’s total cases to 43,855 with 2,814 deaths. Thursday marked the 15th day in a row with daily case counts over the 100 mark, after a brief period slightly below.
The highest new case tally was once again in Quebec, with 188 cases — still far below the peak of the pandemic but higher than the slight rise in cases between July and August. Two new deaths were also announced, taking the death toll to 5,773, out of a total of 64,244 cases.
Finally, New Brunswick reported another new case, taking its total to 193 with two deaths to date.
None of the other Atlantic provinces nor the three territories reported new cases Thursday.
Students across Canada will be fully back to class by the end of this week, worrying some officials about a further rise in cases. Some provinces that have seen classes resume have announced cases in schools, including Quebec and Alberta.
Canada’s chief health officer Dr. Theresa Tam has said it’s “inevitable” that more cases will be seen as in-class learning continues.
On Thursday, the governor of the Bank of Canada said while the country’s economy is showing signs of recovery, that progress could be threatened by a slower rebound for women, youth and low-wage workers.
Tiff Macklem told the Canadian Chamber of Commerce that women and young people are more likely now to be permanently laid off from their jobs due to the pandemic. People permanently laid off take on average twice as long to return to work as people on temporary layoff, Macklem says, risking long-term damage to their jobs prospects and a lasting drag on earnings specifically for youth.
The pandemic is continuing to exact a toll on the rest of the world, forcing many countries into recessions and contributing to the largest economic downturn since the Great Depression in the 1930s.
Worldwide, just over 28 million people have been infected with COVID-19, over 906,000 of whom have died as a result, according to public health data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
The United States continues to be the hardest hit country on Earth with over 6.3 million cases and 191,000 deaths. India recently overtook Brazil for the second most infected country. Both nations have over 4 million cases, although Brazil’s death toll far outpaces India’s, with 129,000 deaths to just over 75,000.
— With files from the Canadian Press