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Coronavirus information
Coronavirus information
The Zero Canada Project provides resources to help you manage your health, your finances and your family life as Canada reopens.
Visit the hub

A man talks to a healthcare worker at a mobile COVID-19 testing clinic, Tuesday, May 19, 2020, in Montreal.

Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press

Top headlines:

What is the reopening plan in my province? A guide

10:00 p.m. EDT

New COVID-19 outbreak identified at frozen fruit plant in Abbotsford, B.C.

A new COVID-19 outbreak has been identified at a frozen fruit processing plant in Abbotsford, British Columbia.

Fraser Health announced late Friday that five employees at Nature’s Touch have tested positive for the virus and case and contact management is ongoing.

The news came after B.C. announced 18 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total to 2,507.

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Officials say three more people have died, bringing the provincial death toll to 155.

About four out of five people infected since the novel coronavirus was first identified in the province have recovered and B.C. officials say there are 310 active cases.

Fraser Health says it has inspected the fruit processing plant and is working to ensure the safety of all employees.

“All close contacts of the employees who tested positive are being followed and Nature’s Touch has voluntarily closed the facility until Monday,” the regional health authority says in a statement.

B.C. officials say an outbreak at Lions Gate Hospital in North Vancouver that has been ongoing for a month has been declared over and no new health-care outbreaks have been identified.

- Canadian Press

7:55 p.m. EDT

British Columbia records 18 new cases of COVID-19, three new deaths

British Columbia recorded 18 new cases of COVID-19 Friday, bringing the province’s total number of active cases to 310.

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Health officials say in a statement that the new figures push the number of cases identified in the province to 2,507.

Among those, 2,042 have now recovered, or about four out of every five people.

Those with active cases of the virus are recovering at home in self-isolation, while 41 are hospitalized including eight in intensive care.

However, the death toll continues to rise and three more people have succumbed to the illness for a total of 155.

An outbreak at Lions Gate Hospital in North Vancouver that has been ongoing for a month has been declared over and no new health-care outbreaks have been identified.

British Columbia recently entered a new phase of its pandemic response with several businesses resuming or preparing to restart operations.

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Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry say this phase is about moving slowly, with patience and care.

- Canadian Press

7:15 p.m. EDT

Quebec launches investigations into COVID-19 death of Montreal inmate

Quebec’s Public Security Department says two investigations have been launched into the death this week of a Montreal inmate from COVID-19.

Marie-Josee Montminy, a department spokeswoman, says the department’s internal investigations division is probing the death of the man who had been detained at the Bordeaux provincial jail.

Montminy says the Quebec coroner’s office is also investigating.

Rights groups said the detainee, Robert Langevin, died on Tuesday after contracting COVID-19 in jail.

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The 72-year-old had filed a complaint with the Quebec ombudsman’s office in late March pleading for his release amid fears he would contract the virus.

His death spurred calls from rights groups and other detainees’ families for Quebec to release more inmates to stem the spread of COVID-19.

- Canadian Press

6:45 p.m. EDT

Leaving hand sanitizer in hot vehicles a fire risk: Alberta doctors

Doctors at Alberta Health Services say people using hand sanitizer when they are out shouldn’t leave it in their cars for too long because it could lead to a fire.

The advice comes in a daily COVID-19 newsletter distributed to physicians, volunteers and staff by AHS president Dr. Verna Yui and senior medical health officer Dr. Laura McDougall.

They said handwashing with soap and warm water is still the best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19, but they noted that’s not always practical when outside the home or in a workplace.

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With hand sanitizer being in short supply, many breweries, distilleries and community-based companies have started making their own with high alcohol content, which they said should be between 60 and 90 per cent.

Yui and McDougall said not to store any hand sanitizer in your car for long periods of time.

“With extended exposure to high temperatures, the alcohol in the hand sanitizer will eventually evaporate, causing it to lose its efficacy,” they wrote in Thursday’s newsletter. “Additionally, there is a potential fire risk to storing hand sanitizer in your car.

“In extreme heat, it can ignite due to its high alcohol content.”

A spokesman with AHS said he doesn’t know of any injuries due to hand sanitizer fires in Alberta, noting it’s just a general warning from the doctors.

- Canadian Press

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6:45 p.m. EDT

Essential workers in Yukon get a wage increase over 16 weeks

Low-income essential workers in Yukon are getting a temporary $4 per hour wage increase during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The territorial government says eligible workers for the program can’t make more than $20 per hour and will receive the benefit for up to 16 weeks.

Essential workers are those in the health-care sector or people who work in the supply of food, medicine, energy, water, transportation and government.

Economic Development Minister Ranj Pillai says in a news release that essential workers have delivered goods and kept shelves stocked.

All 11 people who were diagnosed with COVID-19 in Yukon have recovered and there have been no new cases since April 20.

The territory announced last week that it would allow restaurants and some businesses to reopen by the end of the month as long as they’ve developed a COVID-19 operation plan to keep staff and customers safe.

- Canadian Press

2:45 p.m. EDT

Manitoba announces new COVID-19 cases for the first time in four days

Manitoba health officials are reporting two new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total of probable and confirmed infections in the province to 292.

The two new cases involve a boy under 10 and a woman in her 30s in the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority’s area.

They are the first new cases in four days and, as more people recover, the number of active cases in the province stands at 18.

Previously announced increases in crowd limits are also in effect.

Public gatherings that were limited to 10 people now allow for up to 25 people at indoor events and 50 people outside.

Professional sports athletes, coaches and trainers can also attend team facilities for practices, as long as no members of the public are allowed.

- Canadian Press

2:30 p.m. EDT

Quebec records 65 new COVID-19 deaths, 646 additional confirmed cases of the virus

Quebec is reporting 65 new COVID-19 deaths today, bringing the total to 3,865.

Deputy premier Genevieve Guilbault said Quebec has 46,141 confirmed cases of COVID-19, an increase of 646, with 13,819 people recovered.

She says the province has 1,479 people in hospital with the virus, a decrease of 25 patients.

Culture Minister Nathalie Roy announced that libraries, museums and drive-in movie theatres can reopen across the province as of May 29.

She says that in libraries, book and document lending will be the only services allowed to reopen, and the public won’t be able to circulate beyond the lending counters.

Roy adds that by June 1, recording studios can reopen and indoor shows can once again be filmed and recorded as long as there are no audience members.

- Canadian Press

1:10 p.m. EDT

Newfoundland and Labrador reports no new COVID cases; will reopen pet grooming

Newfoundland and Labrador is permitting outdoor games of tennis to resume immediately and will allow pet grooming services to begin operating again on Monday.

Dr. Janice Fitzgerald, chief medical officer of health, said today the province continues to record no new cases of COVID-19.

It has been more than two weeks since Newfoundland and Labrador recorded any new cases of the disease from the novel coronavirus.

Fitzgerald says tennis players will have to bring their own equipment to the court, and not share it.

She adds that pet grooming companies will have to ensure their employees have personal protective equipment.

Fitzgerald says overnight camping will be permitted when the province moves from the current alert level of four, to level three, but she didn’t say when that will occur.

- Canadian Press

12:30 p.m. EDT

N.S. reports two new cases of COVID-19, as care home still has 16 sick residents

Nova Scotia has identified two new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total of confirmed cases to 1,048.

In the daily report, the province said the Northwood long-term care facility in Halifax – where 52 of the province’s 58 deaths have occurred – currently has 16 residents and four staff with active cases.

Northwood, the largest long-term care home east of Montreal, has been the site of Nova Scotia’s worst outbreak.

The premier said on Thursday that the virus entered the facility through asymptomatic people and spread among the more than 400 residents.

He has said that there will be a “conversation” about how to prevent a similar outbreak in the future.

Eight people in Nova Scotia are in hospital with COVID-19, and there are four people in intensive care being treated for the illness.

- Canadian Press

10:40 a.m. EDT

Ontario reports 441 new COVID-19 cases, 28 more deaths

Ontario is reporting 441 new cases of COVID-19 cases today, and 28 more deaths.

That brings the provincial total to 24,628, which is a 1.8 per cent increase over the previous day’s total.

Ontario’s growth rate in cases has steadily hovered between 1.5 and 1.9 per cent for 12 of the past 13 days.

Chief medical officer of health Dr. David Williams has said the numbers are in a plateau, and called it disappointing.

Ontario’s total includes 2,021 deaths and 18,767 cases that have been resolved.

The number of completed tests rose a bit to 11,276, which is still well short of the province’s capacity of over 21,000 per day.

- The Canadian Press

4 a.m. EDT

N.B. to move to next phase of recovery plan today

New Brunswick is set to move to the next phase of its COVID-19 recovery plan today.

The so-called “yellow phase” means barbers and hair stylists can reopen, as well as churches and fitness facilities.

Dental care, massage therapists, chiropractors and other “close contact” businesses and services will also be allowed to open.

The new phase will also allow family and friends to form social “bubbles,” and up to 50 people to gather with physical distancing.

The move comes a day after the province reported its first new case of COVID-19 in almost two weeks.

But the provincial total is just 121, and 120 of them have recovered.

- The Canadian Press

4 a.m. EDT

Testing wastewater could give early warning of second COVID-19 wave

Researchers in Canada say the best early warning system for a second wave of COVID-19 could be right beneath our feet — in the sewers.

Several other countries have taken to testing wastewater for signs of the novel coronavirus as an indication of flare-ups in their communities.

Now researchers are beginning to look at the option in Canada.

Given that some people can pass the virus on without even knowing they have it, health officials say testing large portions of the population will be key for detecting and quashing any new community spread of COVID-19.

Canada has struggled to keep up with the volume of tests needed to do that.

Mike McKay with the Great Lakes Institute for Environmental Research says scientists across the country are now testing wastewater to see if it could be a viable way to alert public health officials to new outbreaks.

- The Canadian Press

3 a.m. EDT

Another resident dies at Northwood long-term care facility in Nova Scotia

There are now 52 COVID-19 deaths at the Northwood long-term care facility in Nova Scotia.

Health officials say another resident died yesterday at the site of the province’s worst outbreak of the virus.

Outside of Northwood, there have been six deaths across the province.

The total number of cases in the province is now 1,046.

- The Canadian Press

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