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Quebec adds 20 new COVID-19 deaths as hospitalizations rise by double digits

Click to play video: 'Montreal mayor calls on Quebec government for a more solid reopening plan for the cultural sector'
Montreal mayor calls on Quebec government for a more solid reopening plan for the cultural sector
Mayor Valerie Plante called on the provincial government to present a reopening plan for the cultural industry on Sunday, saying people who work in the sector need to plan ahead. As Dan Spector reports, many in the industry are pleading for more financial support to ensure small venues don't crumble – Feb 6, 2022

Quebec registered 20 new deaths linked to COVID-19 as hospitalizations went up Monday for the first time since Jan. 23.

Officials say pandemic-related hospitalizations increased by 14 to 2,425. This includes 178 people in intensive care units, a rise of one.

This comes after 141 patients were admitted to hospitals across the province, while 127 left in the last day.

Quebec also recorded 2,240 novel coronavirus infections, but the government says the daily case count isn’t reflective of the situation since official testing is limited to certain high-risk groups, such as teachers.

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When it comes to screening, the latest information shows 19,499 tests were given Saturday.

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The results of 66,683 rapid tests have been declared by Quebecers to date on the government’s new website. This includes 51,381 positive results.

The province administered 21,748 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in the past day. More than 17.9  million shots have been doled out since the beginning of the campaign.

Quebec has reported 883,192 cases and 13,495 deaths over the course of the health crisis. As of Monday, more than 834,000 people have recovered from the virus.

Announcement on remote work coming soon

Quebec Economy Minister Pierre Fitzgibbon said the government will soon make an announcement on remote work.

“It is clear that I want to allow companies to have in-person work as soon as possible and to leave the  management of sanitary measures, which have been established, to the companies,” he told reporters on Monday. “I think we will get to that soon.”

Remote work, which had previously been recommended, was made mandatory as part of sweeping new restrictions in late December 2021 as COVID-19 cases surged.

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It will be up to employers to eventually decide what role working from home will play in their future operations, according to the minister.

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Fitzgibbon also noted that many workers may not be comfortable heading back to the office under the same conditions as before the pandemic, which could be a source of concern for employers that want to keep their workforce.

with files from The Canadian Press

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