Canada adds 1,796 new coronavirus cases, highest total yet for second wave

Canada reported a total of 1,796 new cases of the novel coronavirus Wednesday, the highest daily total seen since the spring and proof that the second surge of the pandemic may be just beginning.

The country has now seen a total of 158,592 COVID-19 infections to date. Of those, 134,971 patients have since recovered — 1,234 of them over the past 24 hours, according to provincial health officials.

Read more: Health Canada approves rapid coronavirus test after feds put 7.9M on order

Six more deaths were also reported Wednesday, bringing the national death toll to 9,297.

Since Prime Minister Justin Trudeau warned the country last week that the four biggest provinces have entered a second wave, cases have only escalated.

Ontario and Quebec, in particular, have returned to levels seen during the pandemic’s peak in April, with Ontario surpassing those record daily totals this week. British Columbia has also surpassed its springtime peak, although the number of active cases has started to trend slightly downward again.

Ontario, which reported 625 new cases and four new deaths Wednesday, released new modelling the same day projecting the province could see up to 1,000 cases a day in October unless people adhere to stricter measures.

The province has seen a total of 51,710 cases and 2,848 deaths to date, while 43,907 patients have recovered.

Quebec reported 838 new infections, one of its highest daily counts ever, and one additional death that occurred last week. The province continues to lead the country in cases, at 74,288, and deaths, which have hit 5,834. A total of 62,564 people have recovered.

Read more: Latest COVID-19 modelling suggests Ontario could see around 1,000 cases a day in October

Montreal, Quebec City and parts of the Chaudière-Appalaches region of Quebec are going into “red zone” partial lockdowns at midnight Thursday, meaning bars, restaurants and other public spaces will be closed for 28 days in an effort to drive down infections.

In Atlantic Canada, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador each reported one new case, while New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island had no new cases to report.

Nova Scotia has now seen a total of 1,088 cases and 65 deaths to date, while Newfoundland and Labrador has reported 274 cases and three deaths. New Brunswick, which has seen two deaths, and P.E.I. are sitting at 200 and 59 cases, respectively.

Nearly all of those Atlantic cases have recovered, leaving just 12 active cases across four provinces.

Click to play video 'Coronavirus: Quebec Premier Legault introduces new restrictions for people in ‘red zones’' 2:13 Coronavirus: Quebec Premier Legault introduces new restrictions for people in ‘red zones’

Coronavirus: Quebec Premier Legault introduces new restrictions for people in ‘red zones’

In Manitoba, 40 new cases were reported, bringing its total to 1,993. Twenty people have died in the province to date, while 1,374 have recovered.

Saskatchewan saw 14 new cases Wednesday. A total of 1,913 cases and 24 deaths have been recorded since March, with 1,750 recoveries.

Further west, Alberta reported 153 new cases and one more death, taking the province’s totals to 18,062 infections and 267 fatalities. To date, 16,213 patients have recovered.

Read more: Communication, not fines key to 2nd wave coronavirus measure compliance: experts

In British Columbia, officials announced 124 lab-confirmed cases and an additional “epidemiologically linked” case, meaning it has not been confirmed by laboratory testing.

The province has now seen 8,972 confirmed cases and 166 epi-linked cases, along with 234 deaths and 7,591 recoveries.

None of the three territories reported cases Wednesday.

Click to play video 'Coronavirus: Latest modelling suggests Ontario could see around 1,000 COVID-19 cases a day in October, officials say' 1:15 Coronavirus: Latest modelling suggests Ontario could see around 1,000 COVID-19 cases a day in October, officials say

Coronavirus: Latest modelling suggests Ontario could see around 1,000 COVID-19 cases a day in October, officials say

The Yukon has seen 15 cases and the Northwest Territories has a total of five, yet all of those recovered months ago. The Northwest Territories is approaching six full months without reporting a new case.

While Nunavut remains the only jurisdiction without any local confirmed cases of COVID-19, the territory has not fully escaped the virus. Three confirmed cases and seven presumptive cases have been reported among workers at local mines who are based out of province, with health officials considering them part of their home provinces’ numbers.

As provinces wrestle with additional measures and restrictions to try and contain the spread of the virus, the federal government is attempting to provide support through testing and contact tracing.

Read more: Quebec unveils how partial lockdown rules will be enforced in COVID-19 red zones

Under fire for not answering the call for rapid test expansion sooner, Health Canada on Wednesday approved a rapid coronavirus test that can detect the respiratory illness in as few as 13 minutes.

The news comes one day after Ottawa announced it had signed a deal securing up to 7.9 million Abbott ID Now COVID-19 rapid tests once they were approved by Canadian health officials.

When the tests will be in the hands of health professionals — and how they will be distributed — is not yet known.

Global cases approach 34 million

Worldwide, the coronavirus pandemic is showing few signs that is slowing its spread, recording hundreds of thousands of new cases daily.

Globally, over 33.8 million cases and more than 1.01 million deaths have been reported in nearly 190 countries since the virus was first detected in Wuhan, China, over nine months ago, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Click to play video 'Canadians fear impact of second wave of COVID-19' 4:17 Canadians fear impact of second wave of COVID-19

Canadians fear impact of second wave of COVID-19

The United States continues to lead the world in cases, with over 7.2 million, while its death toll also leads the world with nearly 207,000.

India, which has seen over 6.2 million cases and nearly 97,500 deaths, and Brazil’s 4.7 million cases and 142,900 deaths, round out the top three hardest-hit countries on the planet.

The World Health Organization has said it’s “not impossible” to see another million deaths from the virus by the time an effective, readily available vaccine is introduced, which experts have said may not happen until next year.

— With files from Global’s Emerald Bensadoun

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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