Quebec premier says public well being not recommending new measures to struggle COVID wave

Quebec’s COVID-19 hospitalizations are nearing a plateau, the province’s public well being director mentioned Thursday forward of the launch of a vaccination marketing campaign for kids underneath the age of 5.

Dr. Luc Boileau mentioned circumstances and hospitalizations are nonetheless rising — however extra slowly than initially of the wave.

“The expansion is slower, so we’re heading towards a plateau,” he instructed a information convention in Montreal.

Boileau additionally introduced that the province will start providing the Moderna vaccine in opposition to COVID-19 for kids between the ages of six months and 5 years at medical clinics and vaccine facilities as of subsequent week.

He mentioned children will probably be provided a dose a couple of quarter of the dimensions of that given to adults, which gives a “excellent” immune response after two doses. Most will not want a 3rd dose, besides those that are immunocompromised, he added.

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Dr. Nicholas Brousseau, a physician with the province’s public well being institute, mentioned that whereas kids general have a low threat of falling severely in poor health with COVID-19, children within the age group focused by the upcoming marketing campaign are extra in danger than kids who’re barely older .

Greater than 100 younger kids had been hospitalized due to COVID-19 problems over the past two waves, Brousseau mentioned. Whereas it is the selection of fogeys whether or not to vaccinate their kids, “I feel your best option is to vaccinate,” he mentioned.

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Boileau mentioned the rise in circumstances is attributable to the BA.5 variant, which is “not the identical virus as we had in earlier years.”

“Originally of COVID, an individual might contaminate one, two, three folks,” he mentioned.

“Right this moment, an individual who’s optimistic and who has a standard social life can infect 12, 15, 16,” he mentioned, including that many individuals do not appear to appreciate they’ll unfold the illness for 10 days after an infection.

Boileau mentioned officers everywhere in the world had been shocked to see a brand new wave arrive so quickly after earlier ones. Through the present spike in infections — Quebec’s first summer season wave — circumstances appear to have risen extra slowly than in earlier cycles, he mentioned, however might also not descend as rapidly.

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Earlier Thursday, Quebec Premier François Legault mentioned public well being officers will not be recommending new COVID-19 restrictions regardless of excessive ranges of group transmission throughout the province.

Echoing the premiere, Boileau urged folks to take precautions corresponding to handwashing. He additionally advisable a COVID-19 booster for individuals who have not contracted the virus prior to now few months and for these whose final dose was greater than 5 or 6 months in the past. However he mentioned public well being has no plans to reimpose measures corresponding to masks mandates — regardless of indications that enormous gatherings, corresponding to final week’s 2022 Pageant d’ete de Quebec, in Quebec Metropolis, have led to elevated transmission.

Boileau mentioned circumstances in Quebec Metropolis went up after the occasion and will have contributed to the an infection of health-care employees within the area.

He urged older, weak individuals who would possibly attend the Pope’s go to to Quebec Metropolis subsequent week to contemplate taking precautions corresponding to in search of a booster and carrying a masks.

Legault instructed reporters that though COVID-19 hospitalizations have surpassed 2,100, there are fewer sufferers in hospital with the illness in contrast with earlier waves.

Well being officers on Thursday reported 20 extra deaths attributed to the novel coronavirus and a 53-patient rise in COVID-19 hospitalizations. They mentioned there have been 2,110 COVID-19 sufferers in hospital, together with 59 folks in intensive care, an increase of two from the day earlier than.

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Legault steered Quebecers Keep away from visiting the province’s “overloaded” emergency rooms aside from severe medical issues, as a result of many health-care employees are off sick with COVID-19 or on trip.

© 2022 The Canadian Press