COVID-19 in Canada: Ford demands more clarity on vaccine delivery dates; Alberta reports record-high case spike

Elisabetta Bianchini
·4 min read
COVID-19 in Canada
COVID-19 in Canada

For more on today’s top stories and the spread of the novel coronavirus across the country, please refer to our live updates below throughout the day, as well as our COVID-19 news hub.

Cases and deaths continue to rise in Alberta, B.C.

Alberta reported a record 1,733 new COVID-19 case on Monday, with a test positivity rate in the province reaching 8.4 per cent.

“Like all Albertans, I am alarmed by the rising case numbers reported today and over the weekend,” Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta's chief medical officer of health, said. “This is another reminder that COVID-19 has a long incubation period, meaning the actions we take today will not be seen until 10 to 14 days from now.

“I suspect that we will continue to see cases and hospitalizations rise over the next several days as we wait for the impact of the restrictions that were announced last week. Each of us must remain more vigilant as ever.”

Over three reporting periods, Friday to Monday, B.C. confirmed 46 deaths, the highest number of reported deaths to date, in addition to 2,077 cases in that same time period.

There are currently 316 people with COVID-19 in B.C. hospitals, including 75 in ICUs.

“These daily numbers are important...but it is a snapshot and what we need to track is the trends: are we going up, are going down, are we levelling off,” Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.'s provincial health officer, said. “We have seen a levelling off over the weekend but we have to make sure that we are all doing what we need to do.”

Lack of information about COVID-19 vaccine shipments ‘unacceptable’

Ontario Premier Doug Ford said he is still not comfortable with COVID-19 vaccine planning in Canada.

“I have to get answers, I’ve been asking the federal government, we need to know when we’re getting it, how much we’re getting and what we’re getting,” Ford said. “We can’t find out at the last minute that we’re getting vaccines tomorrow.”

This comes after Ontario called on the federal government last week to reveal its plan for the allocation of COVID-19 vaccines across the country.

Ford said he is going to ask Pfizer when the province can expect its “fair share” of the vaccine, but the premier suspects the answer will be that all allocations are going through the federal government.

“I look at it from the business world, when you place an order for hundreds of million of dollars and you aren’t getting answers, and I’m not accusing anyone of this, but either something’s going on, someone’s not being honest, or there’s incompetence, or maybe both,” Ford said. “The clock is ticking and everyone’s spending hundred of million of dollars and you can’t give me a delivery date? It’s unacceptable.”

Ontario continues to see daily COVID-19 cases over 1,700

Ontario reported 1,746 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, including 622 new cases in Toronto, 390 in Peel and 217 in York Region.

The province also confirmed eight more COVID-19 deaths.

Dr. David Williams, Ontario's chief medical officer of health, called the province’s high daily COVID-19 data “troubling” at a press conference on Monday.

There are currently 618 people in Ontario hospitals with COVID-19, including 168 in ICUs.

As of Monday morning, 109 long-term care homes have reported a COVID-19 outbreak, with 710 active resident cases and 483 active staff cases.

The province reported 102 new school-related cases, which includes 86 student cases, 15 staff cases and one person who has not been identified.

This report comes as 11 cases of COVID-19, linked to a soccer game at a sports facility, were confirmed in Vaughan, Ont., between Nov. 11 and Nov. 15.

Over the weekend, thousands of dollars in fines were issued after about 60 people were at a party in a short-term rental unit in Mississauga, Ont.

The Toronto District School Board has confirmed 19 student cases of COVID-19 at Thorncliffe Park Public School. This comes after the Ontario government announced voluntary testing of asymptomatic students and staff in hotspot areas in Toronto, York Region, Peel and Ottawa.

Dr. Barbara Yaffe, associate chief medical officer of health, called this situation “concerning” but highlighted that the Thorncliffe Park community has a high rate of COVD-19 transmission.

“I would assume that in areas where there’s a lot of COVID...there are probably more asymptomatic people walking around as well,” Dr. Yaffe said.

Education minister Stephen Lecce responded to the cases in this school by saying the reports of the school test positivity for its more than 400 tests being at four per cent, compared to the 16 per cent positivity rate in that community, is an indication that “something right” is happening with the layers of protection for students and staff.

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