Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Tuesday December 15, 2020

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Tuesday, December 15, 2020:

  • There have been 142,121 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 1,940 (or 1.4 per cent) from the previous day. There are 121,563 people recovered from the virus while 3,972 people have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 7,019,734 of which 32,045 have pending results.
  • Canada’s coronavirus case total is 468,862. The country has 13,553 deaths from the virus – one in the Yukon, 647 in British Columbia, 733 in Alberta, 91 in Saskatchewan, 499 in Manitoba, 3,972 in Ontario, 7,533 in Quebec, eight in New Brunswick, four in Newfoundland & Labrador and 65 in Nova Scotia.
  • The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit added 34 new cases on Monday to bring the regional total to 603 confirmed cases, of which 64 are active (five more than Friday) and 486 are recovered (29 more than Friday). The number of deaths to date is 53. There is one active institutional outbreak. The community case breakdown is: Leeds-Grenville East (eight active), Leeds-Grenville Central (seven active), Leeds-Grenville West (37 active), Lanark County West (nine active) and Lanark County East (two active).
  • The Eastern Ontario Health Unit region added 61 cases on Monday to bring the total confirmed cases to 1,124, of which 340 are active (48 more than Friday) and 743 are resolved (eight more than Friday). There were 33 in Prescott-Russell, 16 in SD&G, 10 in Cornwall and two in Akwesasne. The number of deaths is 31. Six people are in hospital, including one in ICU. There are 12 active outbreaks (includes nursing and retirement homes, lodging homes, group homes, schools and daycare). Testing increased by 470 to 88,370.
  • Anita Quidangen, a personal support worker at the Rekai Center at Sherbourne Place in Toronto was the first person in the province to receive the COVID-19 vaccine on Monday. In a statement, Premier Doug Ford says it’s “a historic day for Ontario and for Canada as the first Health Canada-approved COVID-19 vaccines have started to be given to our front line health care heroes.” As part of the first phase, over 2,500 health care workers will get the shot.
  • The Ontario government has changed testing guidelines for outbound international travellers. As of this past Friday, those requesting a test for travel clearance won’t be eligible for publicly funded COVID-19 tests in Ontario. The government says it’s to make sure the taxpayer-funded resources go to “key priorities.”
  • A nursing home resident in Quebec City was the first person in Quebec to get the vaccine on Monday. Premier Francois Legault tweeted that Gisele Levesque got the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.
  • Canada is providing nearly $500 million in new funding for vaccinations in developing countries. The international development minister announced the new spend on Monday.
  • Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe says racist comments directed toward the province’s chief medical health officer are disgusting. Meanwhile, Dr. Saqib Shahab says it’s an opportunity to open a dialogue about racism.
  • The number of COVID-19 related deaths in the United States has now surpassed 300,000. That’s roughly the entire populace of St. Louis, Mo.

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