New Brunswick reports seventh COVID-19-related death, 15 new cases
HALIFAX -- A seventh person has died from COVID-19 in New Brunswick.
New Brunswick Public Health confirmed Monday that a person in their 80s died Monday in Zone 2 (Saint John region) as the result of underlying complications, including COVID-19.
"I offer my sincere sympathy to the family of the deceased, and I want them to know that all New Brunswickers grieve with you today," Dr. Jennifer Russell, the province's chief medical officer of health, said during a news conference on Monday.
"Our thoughts are with you, and our province grieves your loss," Premier Blaine Higgs said to the family. "With the rising number of cases in our province, now is the time to proceed with caution and to go above and beyond what we are asking you to do to keep one another healthy and safe."
The province also reported 15 new cases on Monday.
Russell said 11 of the new cases are in the Saint John region (Zone 2), three are in the Moncton region (Zone 1), and the other is in the Fredericton region (Zone 3).
There are 89 active cases in the province and no one is in hospital. Russell says public health officials are still investigating 13 of those cases to determine if there is community spread. There have been 445 confirmed cases in New Brunswick and 349 have recovered. As of Monday, New Brunswick public health has conducted 117,272 tests for COVID-19.
Russell says there are a few cases still under investigation, but of those cases where contact tracing has been completed, they are all travel-related or close contacts of previously confirmed cases.
UPDATE FOR SCHOOLS
On Sunday, positive cases of COVID-19 were confirmed at Montgomery Street School in Fredericton and at Centreville School in Centreville.
Public health says the schools have notified the communities and that "no student-to-student transmission has been determined in any schools," the province said in a news release. "If you or a family member has been in close contact with these cases, you will be notified by Public Health for contact tracing. If you do not hear directly from Public Health, you have not been identified as a close contact."
OUTBREAK AT REHAB CENTRE
Public Health declared an outbreak at the Stan Cassidy Centre for Rehabilitation in Fredericton after an employee tested positive.
That employee is self-isolating while employees and patients who were in contact with the individual have been tested and affected individuals are also isolating.
"All visits to the centre and scheduled appointments are cancelled until further notice," public health said. "Affected patients and their families have been notified."
NO PLANS TO PULL OUT OF BUBBLE
Higgs says the province has no plans to pull out of what remains of the Atlantic Bubble, but did caution people about travel.
"We do not feel it necessary to take this step to remove New Brunswick from the Atlantic bubble at this time, however, we know how quickly things can change," said Higgs. "I am joining my fellow Atlantic premiers in cautioning against non-essential travel within the bubble, and even within our own province. Now is the time to stay local, shop local and take extra precautions to contain the spread of COVID-19."
Higgs also urged people to follow the public health guidelines and give their real name when asked to identify themselves for contact tracing.
"Generally, people are complying with mask requirements and physical distancing, however, more than 30 fines were issued across the province over the weekend for violations of mandatory order provisions under the Emergency Measures Act," said Higgs. "Inspectors issued dozens of compliance orders to businesses and they will be following up on those orders and conducting more inspections to ensure rules are being followed."
Higgs said people should stop looking for excuses to not wear a mask.
"When in doubt, put a mask on," he said. "I can appreciate if you're out in front of your house and this is on your property, then the public shouldn't be on that, that shouldn't be a problem. If you're walking down the the trail where you're meeting lots of people, then put a mask on."