Good evening, these are the top coronavirus headlines this week:
- Health officials in Quebec are recommending people wear masks in crowded public places, as the province sees a wave of patients in emergency rooms.
- Children’s hospitals across the country are being forced to cancel surgeries as they see an influx of pediatric patients. Here’s what experts say is causing the rush – and what isn’t.
- Politicians and public-health officials are hesitant to bring back mask mandates, writes Marsha Lederman. But what if we normalized it not just for COVID-19, but for cold-and-flu seasons to come?
COVID-19 updates from Canada and the world
- In Alberta, Dr. Deena Hinshaw was replaced as Alberta’s chief medical officer of health with Dr. Mark Joffee, a senior official with Alberta Health Services, who was appointed on a temporary basis. Premier Danielle Smith said significant changes are coming this week to the province’s health care system and its leadership.
- China is reporting an uptick in COVID-19 cases, and citizens in Guangzhou crashed through COVID barriers and marched down streets in frustration against the coronavirus curbs that have triggered frequent lockdowns.
- Quebec’s public health director Dr. Luc Boileau and Health Minister Christian Dubé recommended that people of all ages wear masks in crowded public places, except for daycares and schools.
- RSV, an early flu season, a staff shortage and too few kids vaccinated against COVID-19 and flu – all of this is adding up to a massive number of children going to hospitals, exacerbating an already stretched-out health-care system.
- COVID-19 has upended the law industry. Will it ever go back to the way it was?
- At the G20 summit, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced pledges Tuesday to help developing countries improve their infrastructure, go green and make COVID-19 vaccines.
- A year after Novak Djokovic’s high-profile deportation from Australia because he is not vaccinated against COVID-19, the 21-time Grand Slam champion is set to be granted a visa to enter the country so he can compete at the Australian Open in January.
Marsha Lederman: It’s that time of year – time to get the masks out
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While a lot of the focus has been on overwhelmed children’s hospitals, some experts are bracing for a similar spike in seasonal respiratory viruses among older adults. With fewer health care workers to look after the sick and the persistent risk of COVID-19, some anticipate this cold and flu season will be especially precarious for older Canadians.
- What is long COVID? Four explanations for how and why it occurs
- On The Globe’s daily podcast The Decibel, a doctor answered listeners’ current COVID questions
- Waste water is filling the COVID-19 data gap
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