16 infected north of Montreal in Quebec's first COVID-19 outbreak in a daycare

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Quebec has now seen its first COVID-19 outbreak at a daycare — at a facility in Mascouche, in the Lanaudiere region just north of Montreal. 

The daycare, which has been offering emergency child-care for essential workers, was closed on Monday, according to Lanaudiere's director of public health, Dr. Richard Lessard.

An investigation by public health officials found that 12 out of 27 children at the daycare had contracted COVID-19, as well as four employees. The first case was identified on April 30.

Lanaudiere’s public health department has decided to postpone the reopening of schools and daycares in the regional county municipality of Joliette. They were scheduled to reopen on May 11, but the date will be pushed back to May 19, the same timetable planned for Montreal.

Two of Lanaudiere’s other regional county municipalities have made the same decision: the Les Moulins region, where Mascouche is located, and the Assomption region.

These two regions, on the south side of Lanaudiere, were some of the first to be affected by COVID-19, but Lessard said that now he’s seeing more and more cases in the northern part of the district, including in Joliette.

This report was first published by The Canadian Press on May 6, 2020. 

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