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COVID-19 updates, July 22: 95% of new Quebec cases are among people not fully vaccinated

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Province stories 3 deaths as cases dip again beneath 100. Montreal is lagging on first vaccine doses for 12- to 17-year-olds.

Author of the article:

Andy Riga

Publishing date:

Jul 22, 2021  •  13 minutes in the past  •  14 minute learn  •  Join the dialog Montrealers continue to wear masks in Montreal on Wednesday July 21, 2021. Montrealers proceed to put on masks in Montreal on Wednesday July 21, 2021. Photo by Dave Sidaway /Montreal Gazette

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Updated throughout the day on Thursday, July 22. Questions/comments: [email protected]

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Top updates

  • Montreal is lagging on first doses for 12- to 17-year-olds
  • 95% of recent Quebec cases were among people not adequately vaccinated, Dubé says
  • ‘If you’re vaccinated, you’re not going to die,’ Biden tells Americans
  • Canada has shot up in international fully-vaccinated rankings
  • Back to the office: Montreal chamber of commerce campaign seeks a return downtown
  • Just under 57% of Quebecers 12 and older are fully vaccinated
  • Quebec reports 3 deaths as cases dip back below 100
  • Vaccine certificates may allow faster reopening, help plan for resurgence: Ontario science advisors
  • U.S. border closure makes ‘no sense’ as Canada starts to reopen for fully vaccinated Americans: critics
  • Geneticists studying new COVID variant in Quebec
  • Can visual art save empty storefronts downtown? Montreal is betting on it
  • YouTube says it pulled Bolsonaro videos for COVID-19 misinformation
  • A guide to COVID-19 vaccinations in Quebec
  • Here are the current pandemic restrictions in Montreal and Quebec
  • Sign up for our free nightly coronavirus newsletter

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5 p.m.

Thanks for reading

I’m off tomorrow but one of my colleagues will be here with another live blog.

In the meantime, you can follow all our coverage via the coronavirus page.

My previous COVID-19 live blogs are available here.

4:20 p.m.

Tampa Bay Lightning anthem singer battling COVID-19

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4:05 p.m.

NFL: Games will be forfeited, not rescheduled, if COVID hits a team

From the Reuters news agency:

The NFL will not postpone or reschedule games in the 2021 season should a team have too many unvaccinated players unavailable due to COVID-19, according to a memo the league issued to its 32 teams on Thursday.

The memo will be the topic of a scheduled call among all teams set for Thursday night.

The league played a full schedule last season without a cancellation amid an ongoing pandemic but juggled games and bye weeks to make it happen. That won’t be the case this year with the availability of a COVID-19 vaccine, the memo said.

Instead, NFL Network reported, a game that last year would have been rescheduled this year will result in a forfeit for the team that has a virus outbreak. The team will take a loss and could be subject to covering financial losses and league discipline.

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Players on both teams would not receive a game check since the game wasn’t played.

The league memo said nearly all clubs have reached 100 percent vaccination of Tier 1 and 2 staff members. In addition, more than 75 percent of players are “in the process of being vaccinated” and more than half of the clubs have vaccination rates exceeding 80 percent among players.

The NFL cannot mandate player vaccination, but is working with the NFL Players Association on education about the effectiveness and safety of the vaccine. The memo steps up the pressure on teams to address issues about the vaccine with their players.

“Every club is obligated under the Constitution and Bylaws to have its team ready to play at the scheduled time and place. A failure to do so is deemed conduct detrimental,” the memo reads. “There is no right to postpone a game. Postponements will only occur if required by government authorities, medical experts, or at the Commissioner’s discretion.”

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3:30 p.m.

Laval synagogues to require proof of vaccination after members say they wouldn’t come otherwise

While Quebec continues to work on its vaccine passport to ease public health guidelines for the fully vaccinated, some institutions are taking matters into their own hands.

Two synagogues in a shared building in Laval recently told their 250-or-so members only those who have received two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine will be permitted to enter moving forward, as of Saturday — a move management says has been met with positivity thus far.

Read our full story, by Katelyn Thomas.

3:25 p.m.

Opinion: Each in our own way, we are learning to gather again

“For the first time in too long, I was able to host my family indoors this week for Eid. But my perspective on socializing has changed.”

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Read Fariha Naqvi-Mohamed’s latest column.

3:20 p.m.

Newcomer Sageblan backs up its belief in Montreal tourism with heavy investment

An upstart investment firm is plowing hundreds of millions of dollars into Quebec hotels in the belief that a tourism rebound can generate big returns.

Read our full story, by Frédéric Tomesco.

3:05 p.m.

Clearer messaging needed on vaccination in Quebec’s Beauce region, local mayor says

The mayor of a town in Quebec’s Beauce region says public health officials must communicate better with citizens about COVID-19 vaccination, The Canadian Press reports.

The health authority for the region south of Quebec City says 65 per cent of residents in the Beauce-Sartigan municipality are vaccinated with one dose and 66 per cent of residents in the Robert-Cliche area have had one shot. That’s compared with a provincewide first-dose rate of 72.8 per cent.

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Jonathan V. Bolduc, mayor of Saint-Victor, Que., and the prefect of Robert-Cliche, says the provincial Health Department needs to send a clearer message about the benefits of getting vaccinated against COVID-19.

Bolduc said in an interview Wednesday that mixed messaging about masks at beginning of the pandemic and changing guidance about the interval between doses of COVID-19 vaccines have diminished trust in a region where many people are skeptical of government.

The regional health authority declined an interview request, saying it had received comments from people in the area who felt targeted after officials expressed concern about the region’s vaccination rates.

2:50 p.m.

Montreal is lagging on first doses for 12- to 17-year-olds

The province today published a detailed update on Quebec’s vaccination rate by age group and region.

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The first chart below shows the percentage of first doses administered, while the second shows the percentage of people who are adequately vaccinated.

Quebec considers someone adequately vaccinated if they have received two doses, or one dose if they have had COVID-19.

Yellow indicates that between 50 per cent and 74 per cent of the people in an age group are vaccinated, while green shows age groups that have hit or surpassed 75 per cent.

2:45 p.m.

Opinion: Quebec’s ERs are ailing; here’s a proposed remedy

“As an ER nurse, I would argue that many ERs are dangerous places to be in. Because of a shortage of ER nurses, I have been forced to take on patient assignments that jeopardize patient safety and put my licence at risk.”

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Read the full opinion piece, by Nathan Friedland, a Montreal nurse with 17 years experience.

1:55 p.m.

95% of recent Quebec cases were among people not adequately vaccinated, Dubé says

Ninety-five per cent of Quebecers who have contracted COVID-19 in recent weeks were not adequately vaccinated, Health Minister Christian Dubé said today.

And the unvaccinated represented 89 per cent of hospitalizations.

“These figures are striking,” Dubé said via Twitter. “They demonstrate the importance of getting your second vaccine dose now.”

An update published by the Health Department on Thursday looked at the 1,908 new cases that occurred in Quebec over the four weeks before July 17.

The chart indicates that:

  • 64 per cent of the new cases (1,214) occurred among people who were not vaccinated or who had received their first dose less than 14 days earlier.
  • 31 per cent (593) occurred among people who had received their first dose 14 or more days earlier.
  • 5 per cent (101) occurred among people who had received their second dose 7 or more days earlier.

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The update also looks at the 88 new hospitalizations that occurred in the four weeks before July 17.

The chart indicates that:

  • 70 per cent of new hospitalizations (62) occurred among people who were not vaccinated or who had received their first dose less than 14 days earlier.
  • 19 per cent (17) occurred among people who had received their first dose 14 or more days earlier.
  • 10 per cent (9) occurred among people who had received their second dose 7 or more days earlier.

Quebec considers someone fully vaccinated seven days after their second dose.

1:30 p.m.

Canadians baffled: Why is the U.S. air border open, but not the land border?

One-third of Canadians surveyed recently said they don’t know why they can travel by air to the United States but not by land.

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And one other 17 per cent stated the disparity is not sensible, in keeping with the ballot, performed by the Association for Canadian Studies (ACS) in mid-July.

That means slightly below half “of Canadians either don’t know and/or don’t understand our ongoing land/air border asymmetry,” stated ACS president Jack Jedwab.

1:20 p.m.

‘If you’re vaccinated, you’re not going to die,’ Biden tells Americans

The U.S. is “at another pivotal moment in this pandemic,” with COVID-19 cases as soon as once more climbing and beds at some hospitals filling up, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky stated at a Thursday briefing.

Daily hospital admissions have risen by greater than 30 per cent during the last week, she stated.

The availability of extremely efficient COVID-19 vaccines has made the U.S. safer, however some communities stay susceptible because of low vaccination charges and the highly-contagious delta variant.

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At the Thursday briefing, Walensky and other Biden administration officials urged Americans to get vaccinated.

The seven-day average of confirmed COVID-19 infections in the U.S. topped 40,000 on Wednesday for the first time since early May, data compiled by Johns Hopkins University and Bloomberg show. The death toll is averaging at 250 a day.

Both figures are a fraction of the levels reported in January but cases, on average, have more than tripled since the beginning of the month, underscoring how infections are swelling as the delta variant spreads and vaccination rates drop.

“We have a pandemic for those who haven’t gotten the vaccination,” President Joe Biden said Wednesday night during a CNN town hall in Cincinnati. “If you’re vaccinated,” he added, “you’re not going to die.”

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12:25 p.m.

Osheaga returning this fall with Cardin, Reyez and Half Moon Run

In the end, there will be an Osheaga in 2021. Sort of. Osheaga Get Together, at Jean-Drapeau Park Oct. 1-3, will have 5,000 in attendance — or more if the government allows.

Read our full story, by Brendan Kelly.

12:20 p.m.

‘My career appears to be over’: Former head of vaccine rollout says sudden firing was devastating

Maj.-Gen. Dany Fortin, the former head of Canada’s vaccine rollout, says that the government’s decision to suddenly fire him while revealing he was the target of a military investigation into an allegation of sexual misconduct over 30 years ago was “devastating” and that his career “appears to be over.”

Read our full story.

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11:50 a.m.

Canada has shot up in worldwide fully-vaccinated rankings

For comparability functions, right here’s the identical chart – from six weeks in the past (June 9):

11:40 a.m.

Back to the office: Montreal chamber of commerce campaign seeks a return downtown

As vaccination rates rise and health regulations ease, the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal has launched a campaign in support of a return to the city’s downtown office towers, many of which saw workers abandon them at the start of the pandemic.

Read our full story.

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11:30 a.m.

Israel to reimpose coronavirus ‘Green Pass’ as Delta variant hits

Eshel Mordehai, the primary individual to obtain a 3rd dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 coronavirus vaccine, exhibits off his vaccination certificates after getting his jab in Tel Aviv, Israel, on July 12. Israel started administering a 3rd shot to sufferers with compromised immune techniques, as cases within the nation rise. Eshel Mordehai, the first person to receive a third dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 coronavirus vaccine, shows off his vaccination certificate after getting his jab in Tel Aviv, Israel, on July 12. Israel began administering a third shot to patients with compromised immune systems, as cases in the country rise. Photo by JACK GUEZ /AFP via Getty Images

From the Reuters news agency:

Israel announced plans on Thursday to allow only people who are deemed immune to COVID-19 or have recently tested negative to enter some public spaces such as restaurants, gyms and synagogues after a surge in coronavirus cases.

The government had removed most coronavirus restrictions after a rapid vaccination drive that pushed down infections and deaths.

The easing of restrictions included dropping a “Green Pass” program that had allowed only people who had been vaccinated or recovered from COVID-19 to enter some public spaces.

But some measures have already been reinstated, including wearing protective masks indoors and tighter entry requirements for incoming travelers, because of the rapid spread of the more infectious Delta variant of the coronavirus.

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In a further tightening of measures, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s office said the Green Pass program would be back in force from July 29, pending government approval.

“The (Green Pass) will apply to cultural and sporting events, gyms, restaurants and dining halls, conferences, tourist attractions and houses of worship,” Bennett’s office said in a statement after a meeting of his “coronavirus cabinet.”

Entrance to events with more than 100 attendees will be allowed only for “the vaccinated, recovered and those with a negative test result who are aged 12 and over.”

Under what Bennett calls a policy of “soft suppression,” his government wants Israelis to learn to live with the virus – involving the fewest possible restrictions and avoiding a fourth national lockdown that could do further harm to the economy.

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Over 56 per cent of Israel’s 9.3 million population is fully vaccinated, and serious cases have remained lower than during previous waves of infection.

11:15 a.m.

Just under 57% of Quebecers 12 and older are fully vaccinated

11:15 a.m.

Updated charts: Quebec cases, deaths

11:05 a.m.

Quebec reports 3 deaths as cases dip back below 100

Quebec has recorded 99 new cases of COVID-19, the provincial government announced this morning.

That’s four fewer than yesterday.

In addition, three new deaths were reported, none of which occurred over the previous 24 hours. All the deaths occurred before July 20.

Some other key statistics from Quebec’s latest COVID-19 update:

  • Hospitalizations fell by 1, to 71.
  • The number of people in intensive care remained unchanged: 21
  • 103,164 additional vaccine doses were administered over the previous 24 hours.
  • 14,363 tests were conducted on Tuesday, the last day for which screening data is available.
  • Positivity rate: 0.7 per cent.

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Since the beginning of the pandemic, Quebec has reported 376,429 cases and 11,238 deaths linked to COVID-19. A total of 364,470 people who have contracted the disease have since recovered.

In today’s update, Quebec said it has removed 189 confirmed cases from the overall total after a review found that they had been counted twice.

10:10 a.m.

Vaccine certificates may allow faster reopening, help plan for resurgence: Ontario science advisors

From The Canadian Press:

COVID-19 vaccination certificates would allow high-risk settings to reopen sooner with greater capacity and help plan for future waves of the virus, Ontario’s science advisors say.

The group of experts wrote this week that proof-of-vaccination certificates would also help set up infrastructure to guide the reintroduction of public health measures if cases spike in the future. (Read the full report here)

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“COVID-19 vaccine certificates may have a practical short-term utility for supporting and maintaining economic and societal reopening,” the group wrote. “In the longer-term, vaccine certificates may be useful as verifiable, secure, standardized, and accessible electronic or paper records of immunization.”

To prepare the brief, the group looked at jurisdictions that have introduced similar systems around the world to consider what role the certificates might play in Ontario, if introduced.

Premier Doug Ford has said he won’t introduce a proof-of-vaccination system.

“We aren’t going to have a split society,” Ford told reporters last week when asked about the domestic “vaccine passport” concept that’s been floated in other provinces.

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The science table notes that ethical considerations should be weighed when considering a vaccine certificate system.

Their report differentiates between vaccine passports, which relate to travel across jurisdictions, and vaccine certificates, an official document attesting someone has completed a vaccination series.

“The terms are often used interchangeably but have very different meanings and potential uses,” the brief said.

They said vaccine certificates could be applied to regulate entry into high-risk settings for transmission, like indoor dining, bars, gyms and events. The certificates could also be used in settings like schools, universities, congregate settings and workplaces, they wrote, “especially in settings that require mandatory vaccination.”

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Most public settings and companies have partially reopened with capability limits and masking guidelines underneath the present stage of Ontario’s reopening plan. The province has stated 80 per cent of eligible residents might want to have obtained at the least one shot earlier than public well being guidelines are relaxed additional.

Source: Ontario COVID-19 Science Advisory Table Source: Ontario COVID-19 Science Advisory Table 9:35 a.m.

U.S. border closure makes ‘no sense’ as Canada begins to reopen for fully vaccinated Americans: critics

America will prohibit Canadians from crossing the land border to the U.S. for one more month, a transfer critics stated Wednesday would proceed to hurt companies and households in each international locations, particularly in tightly-integrated border areas.

Read our full story.

9:35 a.m.

Geneticists finding out new COVID variant in Quebec

A new COVID-19 variant that’s spreading in Quebec — however not a lot in the remaining of Canada — would possibly assist clarify why the Delta pressure is far much less prevalent within the province, suggests a prime geneticist.

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Read our full story, by Aaron Derfel.

9:35 a.m.

Can visual art save empty storefronts downtown? Montreal is betting on it

Can art act as a magnet for business? Some major Montreal landlords are lending their properties to an experiment aimed at finding out.

Read our full story, by Frédéric Tomesco.

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9:35 a.m.

YouTube says it pulled Bolsonaro videos for COVID-19 misinformation

YouTube said on Wednesday it had removed videos from Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro’s channel for spreading misinformation about the coronavirus outbreak, becoming the latest tech giant to pull his pandemic pronouncements.

Read our full story.

9:15 a.m.

The situation across Canada

Here’s the speed of case progress per 100,000 people over the previous seven days, through the federal authorities’s newest epidemiology replace.

9:15 a.m.

A information to COVID-19 vaccinations in Quebec

Local well being authorities have arrange mass vaccination websites throughout Montreal.

You can book appointments via the Clic Santé website or by phone at 1-877-644-4545.

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Quebecers can also visit walk-in AstraZeneca, Moderna and Pfizer vaccine clinics.

Here are the nuts and bolts of getting vaccinated, by Katherine Wilton. Her guide includes the age groups targeted, how to book appointments, and addresses of vaccination centres.

Two private sites can also help you book appointments:

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9:15 a.m.

Here are the current pandemic restrictions in Montreal and Quebec

We are regularly updating our list of what services are open, closed or modified in Montreal and Quebec, including information on the curfew and other lockdown measures.

You can read it here.

9:15 a.m.

Here’s where Montrealers can get tested today

Montrealers can be screened at test centres across the island.

You can check screening clinic wait times here.

8:30 a.m.

Sign up for our free nightly coronavirus newsletter

Stay informed with our daily email newsletter focused on local coronavirus coverage and other essential news, delivered directly to your email inbox by 7 p.m. on weekdays.

You can sign up here.

[email protected]

Read my earlier live blogs right here.

  1. People wait for COVID-19 vaccines at a mobile vaccination clinic in Rivière-des-Prairies.

    July 21: People 20 to 29 are driving a rise in Quebec cases

  2. Sixty-four per cent of respondents in a new Léger poll said they would agree with requiring a vaccine passport

    July 20: Quebec preparing vaccine passports as cases begin to rise, Dubé says

  3. A passenger looks at the nearly empty international flight schedule board at Montreal's Trudeau airport on Monday, June 21, 2021.

    July 19: Canadian borders will open to fully vaccinated Americans on Aug. 9

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