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Quebec records 179 COVID-19 cases, no deaths as hospitalizations continue to drop

A server wears a face mask as she takes an order from a customer at a restaurant in Montreal, Saturday, June 5, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes

Quebec is reporting 179 new COVID-19 infections on Sunday and no virus-related deaths.

This is the first time the province has recorded fewer than 200 new daily infections and no additional deaths since September.

COVID-19 virus-related deaths are however often reported later and added to the toll retroactively.

The number of COVID-19-related hospitalizations dropped by nine from the day before to 274. Of those, 61 patients are in the ICU, a drop of three from Saturday.

Montreal reported the highest number of new cases in the province with 57.

READ MORE: Quebec cuts interval between first and second doses of COVID-19 vaccine to 8 weeks

No other region in the province reported more than 20 new cases. On a per capita basis, the Chaudière-Appalaches region, south of Quebec City, is the most affected, with 60 active infections per 100,000 people. There are currently 32 active cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 people in Quebec.

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The death toll in the province now stands at 11,149, as one death previously attributed to the virus was withdrawn.

Quebec has reported more than 371,767 COVID-19 infections since the pandemic hit the province. At least 357,867 cases have recovered.

The province saw 83,166 doses of the vaccine administered on Saturday and 1,504 doses were added to the toll from before June 5.

The total number of shots given since the start of the province’s immunization program in December reached over 6 million on Saturday.

Health officials say over 64.5 per cent of Quebecers have received a first dose.

Seniors Minister Marguerite Blais issued a tweet on Saturday saying all residents in private seniors homes have received their second COVID-19 vaccine dose. Quebecers will no longer require appointments to visit loved ones as of June 7.

“So far, the reopening plan is working,” Health Minister Christian Dubé said in a post on Twitter. “We must continue to follow the measures and get vaccinated.”

Montreal and Laval to go from zone red to orange

Everywhere in Quebec still at the province’s highest pandemic alert level — including the cities of Montreal and Laval — will move to a lower restriction level as of Monday.

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Restaurant dining rooms and gyms will be allowed to reopen in those regions, and high school students will return to in person classes full-time instead of having online classes on alternating days.

Six other Quebec regions and part of a seventh that are already at lower alert levels will see restrictions eased further on Monday. That includes the regions of Abitibi-Temiscamingue, Cote-Nord and Nord du Quebec, which will move to the province’s green or lowest alert level. Indoor gatherings consisting of 10 people or the residents of no more than three households are permitted in green zones.

Also on Monday, people over 80 will be able to reschedule their appointments to receive a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

The provincial government halved the interval between first and second doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna mRNA vaccines on Thursday, reducing it to eight weeks from 16.

The interval between doses of Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine was shortened to eight weeks the week before.

–with files from the Canadian Press

Click to play video: 'Quebec maps out plan for earlier second dose of vaccine against COVID-19' Quebec maps out plan for earlier second dose of vaccine against COVID-19
Quebec maps out plan for earlier second dose of vaccine against COVID-19 – Jun 3, 2021

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