New Brunswick still mulling over vaccine passports; reports 11 new cases Wednesday

New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs says he's not ruling out the possibility of vaccine passports as more and more provinces begin to implement them for its residents.

During a news conference Wednesday morning, Higgs said as the pandemic continues on, New Brunswick may need to adapt and that could include the introduction of vaccine passports, as well as possible masking mandates.

Higgs said the passports would be online and designed to help people move freely around the country, adding other provinces have seen an increase in vaccination rates after introducing a vaccine passport.

"I think what we're going to find is, that, basically, if you want to travel outside of New Brunswick, it may become necessary," he said.

But since vaccination rates still continue to rise in the province, Higgs said vaccine passports are not necessary right now.

CASES AND VACCINES

New Brunswick is reporting 11 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, as well as 21 recoveries.

It drops the total number of cases to 127. There are also three people in hospital with the virus.

The province has reached its vaccination target with 75.5 per cent of eligible New Brunswickers having two doses. 

Dr. Jennifer Russell, chief medical officer of health, says 90 per cent of new cases are in those who are either unvaccinated or partially vaccinated.

She also recommended that if people are not fully vaccinated, they continue to wear a mask inside.

"It's not required by law, contrary to the first phases of the pandemic, this is a choice," she said.

With classes resuming next week, Russell and Education Minister Dominic Card will be holding an online Q & A for parents and guardians on Thursday.

CASE DATA

Of the 11 new cases reported Wednesday, five are in Zone 1 (Moncton region). It includes:

  • three people 20-29
  • two people 30-39.

Four cases are contacts of previously confirmed cases and one case is under investigation.

Two new cases are in Zone 3 (Fredericton region) including:

  • one person 19 and under
  • one person 30-39

One case is a contact of a previously confirmed case and one case is under investigation.

There is one case in Zone 4 (Edmundston region) – a person 19 and under who is a contact of a previously confirmed case.

The remaining three new cases are in Zone 6 (Bathurst region) and are as follows:

  • one person 19 and under
  • one person 30-39
  • one person 70-79

One case is travel-related and two cases are under investigation.

Additional information is available on the COVID-19 dashboard.