Hospitalizations continue to drop as Quebec adds 1,053 new COVID-19 cases and 38 deaths
MONTREAL — Quebec added 1,053 new COVID-19 cases and 38 deaths on Tuesday, as hospitalizations continue to drop in the province.
After a small increase the day before, hospitalizations dropped again on Tuesday, with 34 fewer people in hospital.
There are now 1,144 people in hospital for COVID-19 symptoms. Of those hospitalized, 178 people are in intensive care, down five from the day before.
Of those 38 deaths, seven occurred in the last 24 hours, 22 between Jan. 26 and 31, and nine happened before Jan. 26.
Recoveries outnumbered new cases, with 1,454 people reportedly virus-free on Tuesday.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, 264,526 people have caught the coronavirus, of whom 241,537 have now recovered.
As of Tuesday morning, there were 13,126 active cases of COVID-19 in the province.
The total number of deaths in Quebec now sits at 9,862 due to the withdrawal of two deaths after investigation found they were not attributable to COVID-19.
Quebec conducted 20,579 coronavirus tests on Jan. 31, which returned 890 positive results. This represents a positivity rate of 4.3 per cent.
The province releases its testing data 48 hours after the reported day.
The province administered 356 vaccine doses on Monday.
Montreal was the most affected region, reporting 536 new infections, up from 343 the day before. Since March, the city has reported a total of 95,399 cases of COVID-19.
After Montreal, Monteregie was the second most affected region (175 new cases, 38,441 total), then Lanaudiere (67 new, 18,815 total), Laval (66 new, 22,343 total), and Quebec City (61 new, 21,524).
QUEBEC TO RELAX MEASURES ON TUESDAY
Quebec Premier Francois Legault is expected to relax some of the lockdown measures in the province during a press conference at 5 p.m. on Tuesday.
Just what the new measures will be is still unclear. Last week, reporters asked the province if it was considering returning to regional measures, and if the province would extend the province-wide curfew.
Health Minister Christian Dubé refused to answer, but said that he and the premier believed the cerfew was responsible for the recent drop in cases across the province.
“Perhaps I'm going to put my foot in my mouth,” said Dubé. “The curfew is working, and we can see that it works.”
“What is encouraging is that we can see how [cases] have gone down.”
According to the Canadian Federation of Independent Businesses, 14 per cent of Montreal's small retailers, or almost 9,000 stores, are close to permanently closing.
“We really believe they're going to announce a reopening of retail. We don't know if malls are going to reopen, but street front stores will reopen,” said Retail Council of Canada spokesperson Marc Fortin.
— with files from CTV News reporters Rob Lurie and Adam Kovac