COVID-19: Quebec sets new daily record with 3,768 cases, active total skyrockets

Click to play video: 'Thousand flock to testing sites as province sets daily COVID-19 record'
Thousand flock to testing sites as province sets daily COVID-19 record
Watch: More and more Quebecers are taking steps to protect themselves and detect the infection. Long line-ups are now the new normal at COVID-19 testing centres and vaccination clinics. Some people are even being turned away as health care workers try to keep up with growing demand. Tim Sargeant reports. – Dec 17, 2021

As expected, Quebec is reporting a record-breaking number of daily COVID-19 cases on Friday, with 3,768 new infections and seven more deaths.

The highest number of cases in one day in Quebec was recorded on Jan. 6, 2021 with 2,880 infections, according to revised data posted by Quebec’s public health institute website. The single-day record, however, is held by Ontario with 4,812 on April 16.

The number of active cases in Quebec has soared to over 19,500.

Quebec Premier François Legault warned of the spike in a news conference on Thursday, where he announced new measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 as the Omicron variant begins to take hold in the province.

Read more: Quebec to ban high-risk activities, reduce store capacities as COVID-19 cases surge

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The government’s two-pronged approach focuses on reducing contacts and accelerating the rollout of third dose booster shots to a wider segment of the population.

Stores, gyms, bars, cinemas, restaurants, theatres will only be allowed to operate at 50 per cent capacity as of Monday. And activities such as dancing and karaoke are once again being prohibited.

Legault said the increase in cases could result in increased hospitalizations and that new modelling projections showed the province’s already fragile health-network could be overcapacity as early as January.

Click to play video: 'Testing clinics overwhelmed'
Testing clinics overwhelmed

Pandemic-related hospitalizations increased by seven over the previous day with 39 new patients admitted and 32 discharged. Of the 312 people in hospital, 62 are in the intensive care.

In the last 24 hours, 56,097 shots of COVID-19 vaccines were administered. So far, 83,8 per cent of the population has received at least one dose.

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Read more: COVID-19 rapid tests aren’t always accurate. But they’re still useful, experts say

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On Monday, Dec. 20 appointments will open up for booster shots to people aged 65 and over, then for those 60 and over on Dec. 27.

To date, the province has recorded 478,246 infections, 447,054 recoveries and 11,634 deaths.

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