New Brunswick reports 11 new COVID-19 cases, extends red alert level in Edmundston region
HALIFAX -- Public health in New Brunswick reported 11 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, all in the Edmundston region. Five previously reported cases are now considered resolved, with the total number of active cases in the province increasing to 120.
All 11 of Monday's new cases were identified in the Edmundston region (Zone 4). They involve:
- three people 19 and under. These cases are a contact of a previous case;
- two people 30-39. Both cases are under investigation;
- three people 40-49. Two cases are under investigation and one is a contact of a previous case;
- an individual 50-59. This case is under investigation; and
- two people 60-69. One case is a contact of a previous case and the other is under investigation.
Public health says all of the cases are self-isolating.
Of the province's 120 active cases, 98 are located in the Edmundston region, which has seen 65 new cases in the last five days, and went into a 'Red level circuit breaker' on March 25.
The province also announced on Monday that it was expanding the area covered by the Red level in Zone 4 (the Edmundston region).
Beginning at midnight on Monday, the communities of Saint-Léonard, Grand Falls, Drummond, New Denmark and Four Falls will be included along with the previously indicated areas of Edmundston and the upper Madawaska region.
"Public Health made the recommendation to the all-party cabinet committee on COVID-19 and to cabinet to extend the area in which the Red level applies, with the exception of the Saint-Quentin and Kedgwick regions, based on the confirmed presence of the more contagious variants of COVID-19 along with the possibility of community transmission," the province wrote in a news release.
On Thursday and Friday last week, 3,335 asymptomatic people were screened in Zone 4 and three of them tested positive for COVID-19.
N.B. COVID-19 CASE DATA
New Brunswick has had 1,588 cumulative confirmed cases since the pandemic began. In total, 1,437 people have recovered, and 30 people have died in the province from COVID-19.
Four people are in hospital as a result of COVID-19, with two people in the intensive care unit.
Public health says 1,266 tests were completed on Saturday in New Brunswick, and 253,322 total since the start of the pandemic.
The number of cases are broken down by New Brunswick’s seven health zones:
- Zone 1 – Moncton region: 354 confirmed cases (9 active cases)
- Zone 2 – Saint John region: 230 confirmed cases (6 active cases)
- Zone 3 – Fredericton region: 246 confirmed cases (4 active cases)
- Zone 4 – Edmundston region: 521 confirmed cases (98 active cases)
- Zone 5 – Campbellton region: 182 confirmed cases (0 active cases)
- Zone 6 – Bathurst region: 29 confirmed cases (2 active cases)
- Zone 7 – Miramichi region: 26 confirmed cases (1 active case)
CLINICS USING ASTRAZENECA POSTPONED
New Brunswick Public Health has paused giving the AstraZeneca vaccine to people younger than 55 years old after a recommendation from the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI).
It will continue using it for those over 55 as there have not been any serious effects noted, public health wrote in a news release. Planned clinics using that vaccine have been postponed and will be rescheduled.
"The committee made the recommendation following concerns in Europe due to rare cases of people under 55 having blood clots up to 20 days after receiving the AstraZeneca vaccine," public health wrote. "Of the 20 million doses of the vaccine administered in Europe, there have been 25 incidents of this happening or about one in a million."
It says that no serious adverse events have been reported in Canada associated with the AstraZeneca vaccine or from any of the other COVID-19 vaccines. Further information for those who have received the first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine is available online.
"While we have seen no cause for concern, we are taking these steps out of an abundance of caution pending further guidance from Health Canada," said Dr. Jennifer Russell, New Brunswick's chief medical officer of health.
VACCINATION CLINICS FOR HIGH SCHOOL STAFF
New Brunswick is postponing clinics to offer vaccination clinics for high school staff in the province.
Vaccination clinics for Monday and Tuesday have been postponed, meaning the following schools will be open on Tuesday, March 30:
- Dalhousie Regional High School
- Sugarloaf Senior High School in Campbellton
- École Aux Quatre Vents in Dalhousie
- Polyvalente Roland-Pépin in Campbellton
- Bathurst High School
- École Secondaire Népisiguit in Bathurst
Public health says since March 22, 4,500 high schools provincewide continue to have the opportunity to receive a COVID-19 vaccination at a clinic in one of 16 locations.
More detailed information about the clinics and registration will be sent directly to the appropriate school staff.
New Brunswick's COVID-19 online dashboard provides an update on the amount of vaccines that have been administered to date.
As of Monday, 90,182 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered so far. Of those, 77,959 were first doses and 12,223 people have received two doses of vaccine.
As of Friday, the province has received a total of 123,115 doses of COVID-19 vaccine.
POTENTIAL EXPOSURE AT EDMUNDSTON GYM
Public Health has identified a potential public exposure to the virus at a gym in Edmundston:
- Sparta Progression Gym, 113 D 44th Ave., on March 22 between 6 a.m. and 7 a.m.
People who were in this facility during those dates and times should self-monitor for symptoms for 14 days after their visit. Should any COVID-19 symptoms develop, they are directed to self-isolate and take the self-assessment online or to call 811 to get tested.
REST OF PROVINCE AT YELLOW LEVEL
All other zones, including the communities outside the circuit breaker in Zone 4, remain in the Yellow level under the province’s mandatory order.