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N.S. reports 14 new COVID-19-related deaths in weekly update; slight climb in hospitalizations



Health officials in Nova Scotia are reporting 14 new COVID-19-related deaths on Thursday – six more deaths than what was reported in the province's weekly COVID-19 update last week.

In the data released Thursday, which covers the six-day period between April 6 and April 11, the province reported a total of 277 deaths related to COVID-19 since the pandemic began. Of those, 165 were during the Omicron wave.

Since the start of the Omicron wave, which began on Dec. 8, 2021, the median age of reported COVID-19 deaths is 80.

The province’s chief medical officer of health urged Nova Scotians to be cautious going into the holiday long weekend.

“Whatever you’re celebrating this weekend, given the amount of COVID that’s around us it’s critically important that we remember to follow the safety protocols and gather in a safe manner,” said Dr. Robert Strang.


The province's weekly COVID-19 update shows a continued increase in lab-confirmed cases, as well as a "corresponding increase in the metrics used to monitor severe outcomes."

Strang says the rise in cases is largely due to the highly contagious BA.2 variant of COVID-19.

“Our latest results from the national lab show that a third of samples submitted from mid-March were in the BA.2 Variant.”

However, Strang said Nova Scotia’s high rate of vaccination has led to fewer people in hospital or dying from COVID-19, when compared to the total number of cases.

“If you look at this report, that third dose of vaccine lowers somebody’s risk of hospitalization by more than 83 per cent, compared to those who have had no vaccine or only one dose.”

“When you look at deaths, the risk of death is decreased by 91 per cent versus one or no doses of vaccine.”


As of Thursday, 64.2 per cent of Nova Scotians have received three doses of COVID-19 vaccine, 87.6 per cent have received two doses, 4.8 per cent have received one dose, and 7.6 per cent were not vaccinated.

Strang said there is lagging booster dose uptake in the 18 to 59-year-old age group.

Deputy Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Shelley Deeks joined Strang in Thursday’s news conference, and said vaccination rates in the youngest eligible group are also behind.

“What we are seeing in Nova Scotia is common to what is happening across the country, in that we are seeing a lower uptick in 5-11, people in that age group than we are seeing in older children and younger adults,” said Deeks.

She says evidence shows that parents of those kids are hesitant to vaccinate their children.


The number of hospitalizations in Nova Scotia have gone up slightly since the province's last update.

Between April 6 and 11, Nova Scotia saw 72 new hospital admissions due to the virus and 36 discharges.

As of Thursday, there were 59 people in hospital due to COVID-19, 10 of whom were in intensive care.

Last week, the province reported 57 people in hospital and nine people in intensive care in its weekly report.

Of those currently in hospital:

  • 25 per cent are unvaccinated
  • the median age is 76
  • the average length of stay is 6.8 days


There were 6,912 new COVID-19 cases identified with PCR tests between April 6 and 11.

This is a decrease of 79 new cases since the province announced 6,991 new PCR-confirmed cases last week.


Nova Scotia will be ending its COVID-19 dashboard updates at the end of April.

The dashboard first became active in January 2021.

Until then, COVID-19 data can still be found on the province's COVID-19 online dashboard.


Moving forward, Nova Scotia says weekly COVID-19 updates will include information for seven days, between Tuesday and Monday. Data will still be released each Thursday.

The province says the adjustment will allow public health's data and surveillance team more time to collect, validate and analyze information.

The new weekly summary will also have a table that shows the number and rate of hospitalizations and deaths by age group during the Omicron wave.

"This, along with other information in the weekly report, helps public health better understand the two biggest risk factors for severe disease and death, which are age and vaccination status," wrote public health in a news release Thursday.

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