In lieu of an in-person update to the media, Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, issued the following statement today:
“There have been 151,671 cases of COVID-19 in Canada, including 9,262 deaths. The percentage of recovered cases is currently at 86 per cent. Laboratories across Canada continue to test at a high rate, with an average of almost 70,000 people tested daily last week and 1.4 per cent of these testing positive. As of Friday September 25, an average of 1,175 cases were being reported daily across Canada over a seven-day period. As some provinces and territories do not report new cases over the weekend, the next update for the average daily case count will be provided next Tuesday, once these numbers have been compiled.
As we head into another week, we need to be vigilant about rising cases and increasing hospitalizations, particularly in areas where cases are increasing most rapidly. Surges in cases, leading to increases in hospitalizations can quickly overwhelm public health and healthcare system resources in localized areas, while increasing the likelihood of spread to more areas.
Last week I urged Canadians to increase personal protective measures and to reduce their number and durations of close contacts as much as possible. Though we all have different personal and family circumstances, every protective measure we can take matters to reduce the overall rate of infection in our communities. That is because every person we encounter brings a whole network of contacts history with them, so any all efforts to reduce the number, duration and closeness of encounters makes a big difference. As well, as public health controls and policies reduce our risk of infection and spreading the virus, everything we do to consistently maintain personal protective practices helps to reduce the overall rate of infection.
The quickest and safest way for Canada to get back on the slow burn is for us all to for us to take every measure during every moment of our day, and always act in a way that can prevent the spread of illness to others. That means,
- Always keeping a 2-metre physical distance from others who are outside of our small, consistent and trusted contacts bubble, whether outdoors or indoors.
- Always keeping up with good hygiene habits of frequent and meticulous handwashing, covering coughs and wearing a non-medical mask or face covering where appropriate
- Limiting the amount of time and the number of people you come into close contact
- Opting for lower risk settings/situations where public health measures and policies are in place whenever possible.
We have a chance to prevent a further escalation of the epidemic if we all act together now. Local public health authorities cannot do it alone. Each of us must take action to protect ourselves, our loved ones and our communities. Read through my COVID-19 information and resources backgrounder to understand the risks and know the precautions you can take.”