New Brunswick reports 106th death related to COVID-19; 40 new infections Friday
New Brunswick is reporting five new deaths related to COVID-19 on Friday, increasing the total number of virus-related fatalities in the province to 106.
“Sadly, five more people have lost their lives to this virus,” Premier Blaine Higgs said in a release.“While we are seeing some stabilization in our numbers, we must continue and expand the circuit breaker measures currently in place due to low vaccination numbers and the high infection rate in those areas.”
Public Health says four of the deaths involve individuals in the Moncton region (Zone 1), and include:
- Two people in their 60s
- A person in their 70s
- A person in their 80s
One death involves an individual in the Campbellton region (Zone 5) in their 70s.
“Every loss to the COVID-19 virus is heartbreaking,” Dr. Jennifer Russell, chief medical officer of health, said in a release.“These lives lost are a reminder of why we must do everything we can to protect ourselves and our loved ones, including getting vaccinated and following public health measures and all restrictions in place.”
40 NEW CASES, 67 RECOVERIES
New Brunswick is reporting 40 new COVID-19 cases, along with 67 recoveries on Friday, as the total number of active infections drops to 731.
Of the new cases, 29 – or 73 per cent – are unvaccinated, two – or five per cent – are partially vaccinated, and nine – or 22 per cent – are fully vaccinated.
REGIONAL BREAKDOWN OF NEW CASES
The 25 new cases in Zone 1 (Moncton region) are as follows:
- 10 people 19 and under;
- two people in their 20s;
- four people in their 30s;
- four people in their 50s;
- three people in their 60s;
- a person in their 70s; and
- a person in their 80s.
Twenty-four cases are under investigation and one is a contact of a previously confirmed case.
The three new cases in Zone 2 (Saint John region) are as follows:
- a person in their 20s;
- a person in their 40s; and
- a person in their 60s.
All three cases are under investigation.
The five new cases in Zone 3 (Fredericton region) are as follows:
- three people 19 and under;
- a person in their 20s; and
- a person in their 30s.
All five cases are under investigation.
The five new cases in Zone 4 (Edmundston region) are as follows:
- a person 19 and under;
- a person in their 30s;
- a person in their 50s; and
- two people in their 60s.
All five cases are under investigation.
The two new cases in Zone 5 (Campbellton region) are both 19 and under. One case is under investigation and the other is a contact of a previously confirmed case.
Additional information is available on the COVID-19 dashboard.
MAJORITY OF ICU CASES REMAIN UNVACCINATED
Public health says there are currently 50 people in hospital in New Brunswick. Of those, 25 are unvaccinated, three are partially vaccinated and 22 are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
Health officials say there is no one in hospital under the age of 19.
New Brunswick has 15 people in an intensive care unit, 14 of which are unvaccinated and one individual is partially vaccinated.
Public health reported Friday that 83.3 per cent of eligible New Brunswickers are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and 92 per cent have received their first dose.
All eligible New Brunswickers can book a second-dose appointment for a date that is at least 28 days after the first dose.
A list of upcoming mobile and walk-in clinics is available online.
STANDARDIZED PROOF OF VACCINATION
The provincial government is working with the federal government and other provincial and territorial governments to develop a standardized proof of vaccination that will facilitate travel across Canada and internationally.
“New Brunswick has met all of its milestones in this development work with other provinces and territories, and we are on track to deliver a QR code proof of vaccination credential in mid-November,” said Higgs.
The proof of vaccination will be accessible on any electronic device and will be printable.
UPDATE ON SCHOOL SPORTS AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES
Effective Friday, teams and extracurricular groups will be permitted to travel within New Brunswick, including travel in and out of circuit breaker communities. Students under the age of 12 in circuit breaker communities will also be able to resume school sports and extracurricular activities, following the Health and Safety School guidelines.
All these activities continue to be subject to guidance provided in the mandatory order.
"Spectators are permitted to attend school-related events that are held outside of school facilities if they show proof of two doses of an approved COVID-19 vaccine and follow masking and physical distancing requirements," read the release.
Beginning Friday, Oct. 29, spectators will be permitted to attend sports and extracurricular activities within school buildings, provided they follow masking, physical distancing and any other operational requirements set out by schools or districts.
All events will require the co-operation and support of families and community volunteers. Should not enough members of the community volunteer to help manage events, individual schools and school districts may choose to not allow spectators.
HALLOWEEN GUIDANCE IN NON-CIRCUIT BREAKER AREAS
Public health is recommending that residents who wish to trick-or-treat this Halloween in non-circuit breaker areas only travel with their single household, plus up to 20 consistent contacts.
"People handing out treats in non-circuit breaker areas should sanitize their hands between visitors, keep high-touch areas such as door handles and railings clean, and provide treats through touchless means," wrote public health in a news release on Friday.
"Do not permit children to take candy from a bowl of treats unless the treats are arranged so that children will not touch other treats when they take their own. Individual treat bags are a good option. Trick-or-treaters should wash their hands before heading out and upon returning home."
More information is available online.
HALLOWEEN GUIDANCE IN CIRCUIT BREAKER AREAS
Health officials say in circuit breaker areas, travelling for trick-or-treating is limited to a single household and appropriate distancing, masking and existing restrictions on indoor gatherings must be followed.
People handing out treats in a circuit breaker area must provide treats through touchless means. Everyone must wear community masks when they are unable to maintain a distance of at least two metres.
“We want children across the province to be able to enjoy Halloween, but it is imperative that everyone does so in as safe a manner as possible,” said Russell.
More information is available online.
CIRCUIT BREAKER EXTENSION REMINDER
During a live COVID-19 news conference Thursday, Higgs said while the number of new and active cases have moved in the right direction since the province implemented "circuit breaker" measures on Oct. 8, the numbers are still too high.
"That is why on the advice of public health and the cabinet COVID-19 committee, we've decided to extend circuit breaker measure for at least seven days," Higgs said on Thursday. "The Delta variant is different than anything we've experienced so far, that is why we need to treat it differently."
The areas affected are Zone 1 (Moncton region) as far north as and including Sainte-Anne-de-Kent and including Havelock in Zone 2; the northern portion of Zone 3 from and including Deerville and Florenceville-Bristol, but excluding Hayesville and Parker Ridge; and all of Zone 4 (Edmundston region).
Russell said in a news release that the measures will be lifted when public health can confirm "a sustained trend of decreasing numbers of cases and a decline in the seven-day average of new hospital admissions."
14-DAY CIRCUIT BREAKER IN ZONE 5 BEGINS FRIDAY
On Thursday, New Brunswick Public Health announced that Zone 5 (the Campbellton region) will enter a 14-day circuit breaker starting Friday at 6 p.m. to bring the high number of COVID-19 transmissions in the region under control.
You can find more information online about the circuit breaker rules and the areas it covers, including maps.
RAPID-TEST KITS AVAILABLE FOR PICKUP
Public health has made free rapid COVID-19 screening tests available for those who have not tested positive for COVID-19.
The tests are designed for people two and older and most have five tests to be used over a 10-day period. People 16 and under must be accompanied by an adult to acquire a kit.
On Thursday, the province distributed 9,471 rapid-test kits.
CONFIRMED CASES IN SCHOOLS AND CHILD-CARE FACILITIES
A new case has been confirmed at Garderie Power Play in Dieppe in Zone 1 (Moncton region). Affected families have been notified. If you or a family member have been in close contact with a case, you will be notified by Public Health or the facility for contact tracing. If you are not notified directly, you have not been identified as a close contact.
Since Sept. 7, 57 early learning and child-care facilities have had confirmed cases of COVID-19.
POTENTIAL PUBLIC EXPOSURES
A map of potential public exposures can also be found on the COVID-19 dashboard.