Some provinces begin easing COVID-19 restrictions as hospitalizations stabilize

Click to play video: 'Loosening restrictions and the latest on Pfizer’s new COVID pill' Loosening restrictions and the latest on Pfizer’s new COVID pill
Vaccine researcher and family doctor Dr. Iris Gorfinkel discusses the easing of restrictions in Ontario and explains the potential benefits and pitfalls of Pfizer’s COVID pill – Jan 28, 2022

A number of provinces are tweaking their public health protocols to ease restrictions as COVID-19 hospitalizations continue to show signs of stabilizing.

Saskatchewan’s government said isolation rules would be relaxed Friday as the province transitions to treating COVID-19’s highly communicable Omicron variant like other common respiratory viruses such as influenza.

The changes include no longer requiring close contacts of people who test positive for the coronavirus to self-isolate.

Read more: Rapid test or medical note OK for COVID workplace claims in Ontario during Omicron: WSIB

In Ontario cinemas, theatres, arenas and concerts will be reopening Monday, with capacity limits, but also with the ability to serve snacks and drinks.

Indoor dining will be back on the menu at restaurants, and Premier Doug Ford said Thursday that some non-urgent surgeries would be resuming.

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Indoor dining at restaurants, with capacity limits, will also resume in New Brunswick starting Saturday, and students there are to return to in-person classes on Monday.

In Quebec, officials reported a significant drop in the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations Thursday, although 56 new deaths were linked to the virus.

Meanwhile, Justin Trudeau will be working from home for a while after being exposed to COVID 19.

The prime minister said in a tweet Thursday that he learned of the exposure the previous night, adding that despite a subsequent rapid antigen test that was negative, he would follow public health rules and isolate for five days.

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