N.S. Opposition leader calls for return of daily COVID-19 data

Click to play video: 'Nova Scotia legislature feeling impacts of rising COVID-19 cases'
Nova Scotia legislature feeling impacts of rising COVID-19 cases
Impacts of COVID-19 on workplaces are being felt at the Nova Scotia legislature. Several MPs are out because of COVID, and budget estimates had to be delayed Thursday because of staffing issues. As Alicia Draus reports, opposition members say this is something that should have been planned earlier. – Mar 31, 2022

Amid rising COVID-19 case numbers in Nova Scotia, the leader of the official Opposition is calling on the governing Progressive Conservatives to return to daily data updates.

The province abandoned daily reporting last month with the lifting of most remaining restrictions, instead opting to release the number of new cases, hospitalizations and deaths once a week on Thursdays.

However, even without daily numbers, COVID-19 continues to spread in Nova Scotia.

Beginning Monday, the QEII Health Sciences Centre said it will postpone most elective and non-emergency surgeries “due to an increasing number and acuity of patients with COVID-19 in hospital, combined with a growing number of staff off work.”

Story continues below advertisement

The latest numbers from Nova Scotia Health show there are just shy of 800 health-care workers across the province who are off due to COVID-19.

In a release Saturday, Liberal leader Iain Rankin called on Premier Tim Houston to schedule a COVID-19 news briefing “as soon as possible” and return to daily data reporting.

“We are seeing case numbers rise quickly and an increase of hospitalizations in this province, but there is still time to align Premier Houston’s COVID approach with public health advice, and prevent more of our most vulnerable from ending up in the ICU,” Rankin said in the release.

“I am asking for the premier to revisit what medical health experts have been recommending and consider how important mask mandates, testing, and limiting contacts have been in slowing the spread of the virus.”

According to the latest update on Thursday, there were 51 Nova Scotians in hospital, 11 of whom were in the ICU. Between March 23 to March 29, there was an average of nearly 600 positive COVID-19 PCR tests per day.

But the daily updates only show a “snapshot” of the situation, the release said.

Story continues below advertisement

“We need transparency in the numbers and for the government to be more definitive with public health measures so we can avoid the worst impacts of this wave,” said Rankin.

A spokesperson for the Progressive Conservatives could not immediately be reached for comment Saturday.

Sponsored content