Nova Scotia sets daily high with 175 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday
HALIFAX -- Nova Scotia Public Health reported 175 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, the most the province has reported in one day since the pandemic began more than a year ago.
The previous daily high was the 153 cases reported on Tuesday.
Of the new cases reported on Wednesday, there are 149 cases in Central Zone – which includes Halifax Regional Municipality – where Public Health says there continues to be community spread of the novel coronavirus.
There are 13 new cases in Eastern Zone, nine in Western Zone and four in Northern Zone.
Public Health says it continues to closely monitor the Eastern, Northern and Western Zones for community spread.
As of Wednesday, Nova Scotia has 1,203 active cases of COVID-19. There are 40 people in hospital, including nine in an intensive-care unit (ICU).
"We're still dealing with very high case numbers that do involve the variants," said Premier Iain Rankin. "I want to thank all Nova Scotians for following the restrictions. Please continue to do your part to protect your province and keep each other safe."
The Nova Scotia Health Department said it was unable to breakdown how many of Wednesday's 175 COVID-19 cases are from Tuesday as opposed to previous days.
"As the lab worked through its backlog, positive cases were added into our data system and the data entry is still a bit behind," the Department of Health said in response to a query from CTV Atlantic.
BACKLOG AT TESTING LAB 'RESOLVED'
The backlogs at the Nova Scotia Health Authority lab and in public health's case data entry into Panorama, the province's online dashboard, have been "resolved," public health stated in a news release.
"Case numbers continue to be very high and that's not unexpected," said Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia's chief medical officer of health. "As the lab worked through its backlog, positive cases were added into our data system and the data entry is still a bit behind. That delay is reflected in the high numbers we're still seeing. The team is working hard and I expect data entry will catch up quickly. We should not take any comfort from this -- even without a lag, our numbers would still be too high. Nova Scotians need to stay the course and follow restrictions."
The backlog of 45,000 unprocessed tests reported last Friday was caused by the sharp increase in the volume of testing that started after a recent outbreak in the Halifax area.
Nova Scotia Health Authority's labs completed 11,506 tests on Tuesday.
"The lab is now processing tests within 48-72 hours," the news release states. "Public health also continues to work through the backlog in case contact and data entry into Panorama and that is expected to be resolved in the coming days."
Public health said that because of high testing volumes, it might take between five and seven days for people to get their result through the 1-844 COVID test results phone line.
Public health reminded people who are waiting for test results because of a potential exposure, because they have symptoms, or were advised by public health to self-isolate, must continue to self-isolate until they receive a negative result.
"Close contacts of confirmed COVID-19 cases and those who were present at high-risk exposure locations are required to self-isolate for a full 14 days, regardless of test result," Public health stated in the news release.
NO SYMPTOMS? USE POP-UP TESTING, PROVINCE SAYS
The province is encouraging Nova Scotians to use pop-up sites if they are not showing symptoms, but want to be tested.
For more information on rapid testing pop-up sites being set up across the province, you can refer to this page on the Nova Scotia Health website.
The province also said that asymptomatic COVID-19 testing has resumed at primary assessment centres across the province. To book an appointment, visit: https://covid-self-assessment.novascotia.ca/en
You can also do an online self-assessment if, in the past 48 hours, you've had or you are currently experiencing mild symptoms, including:
- fever (i.e. chills/sweats) or cough (new or worsening)
- sore throat
- runny nose/nasal congestion
- shortness of breath/difficulty breathing
If you cannot access the online self-assessment, or wish to speak with a nurse about your symptoms, you can call 811.
VACCINATION TOTAL GROWS
As of Tuesday, Nova Scotia public health has administered 334,775 doses of COVID-19 vaccine. Of those, 36,858 are a second dose.
LOCKDOWN RESTRICTIONS CONTINUE
Nova Scotia is currently under stronger restrictions to protect public health. Information about the lock-down regulations is available on this page of the provincial website.