N.B. COVID-19 roundup: Province provides update this afternoon

The province will provide an update on COVID-19 this afternoon as case counts continue to rise. Dr. Jennifer Russell, the chief medical officer of health, and Premier Blaine Higgs will participate in the 2:30 p.m. news conference. The event will be livestreamed here on CBC New Brunswick’s website. It will be the first update since Friday, when 57 new cases of COVID-19 were announced, putting the total active case count at 370, the highest active case count since the pandemic began. The province’s previous peak for active cases was 348 on Jan. 25. Nearly 20 of the new cases were among young people, with 12 among “zero to nine-year-olds,” Education Minister Dominic Cardy told reporters during a news conference. Nineteen of the cases involved people 19 or under, with cases confirmed at five schools in three zones, according to a Public Health news release. John Caldwell School in Grand Falls also alerted parents to a case of COVID-19 on Friday. The school was not mentioned in the province’s news release that day. Seventeen people were hospitalized, as of Friday, including 10 in intensive care. Last week, Russell said the province is on a trajectory to see 100 new cases a day, every day. Finalizing plans for 3rd doses for immunocompromised The province is finalizing its plans for third doses of COVID-19 vaccines for immunocompromised people in light of new guidance from the National Advisory Committee on Immunization, also known as NACI, the chief medical officer of health said last week. “We have been working on that behind the scenes, so more to follow,” Dr. Jennifer Russell told CBC News on Sept. 15. “We were waiting for NACI to make their recommendations and we’re prepared to start rolling that out very, very soon. We’re just finalizing all those operational things this week.” The national advisory body on vaccines now recommends giving third doses of COVID-19 vaccines to certain immunocompromised individuals but still hasn’t reached a decision on whether to provide additional shots to the broader population. Canada’s national advisory body on vaccines now recommends giving third doses of COVID-19 vaccines to certain immunocompromised individuals. (Ted Aljibe/AFP/Getty Images) The recommendations from NACI, released Sept. 10, stipulate that moderately to severely immunocompromised Canadians should be vaccinated with a primary series of three doses of an authorized mRNA-based vaccine, which includes those from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna. For those who have already had a two-dose series, NACI recommends providing a third dose, ideally of an mRNA vaccine — but the committee stressed this should not be considered a “booster.” The goal is to provide an extra shot to people who “may have somewhat lower responses to their first vaccinations,” chair Dr. Shelley Deeks had explained. Some other jurisdictions, such as Prince Edward Island, Ontario, Alberta, Yukon and Manitoba are already offering additional shots for certain vulnerable populations, including immunocompromised individuals, transplant recipients, cancer patients and residents of various care homes. Manitoba has also joined Saskatchewan and Quebec in offering extra rounds of mRNA shots to people who want to travel to countries that may not recognize mixed-vaccination status. A total of 77.5 per cent of New Brunswickers aged 12 or older are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, as of Friday, and 86.1 per cent have received at least one dose. New Brunswick has had 3,237 confirmed cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic began, with 2,818 recoveries so far and 48 COVID-related deaths. A total of 432,494 tests have been conducted to date. Outbreaks at nursing homes worry association The New Brunswick Association of Nursing Homes representing 71 licensed nursing homes in the province is growing concerned about the safety of its residents as outbreaks spread through its homes in the province.  Michael Keating, the interim director of the association, said at least eight nursing homes have experienced an outbreak in the last three weeks.  “Quite frankly, we’re very concerned,” he told Information Morning Moncton.  Most recently, families were notified this weekend of 10 positive cases of COVID-19 in the Drew Nursing Home in Sackville Staff and residents were tested over the weekend. Michael Keating, executive director of the New Brunswick Association of Nursing Homes, says the spread of COVID-19 in nursing homes is a great concern. (Shane Fowler/CBC News) All of the residents have been fully vaccinated and their symptoms are mild, Keating said. He wasn’t sure if all the staff had been vaccinated. Keating said staffing has been a problem at the nursing homes experiencing COVID-19 outbreaks, with some employees unable to work and calling in sick.  He said staffing normally drops by about 30 per cent when an outbreak is declared.  “It has put certain pressures on administration,” he said.  He said the Department of Social Development provided assistance Saturday and Sunday at the Drew home. The Drew Nursing Home in Sackville has 10 positive cases of COVID-19 (CBC) “The nursing home is quite thankful for that because it allowed more care to be provided,” said Keating.  Keating said the nursing home association is meeting today to talk about building a replacement worker bank. The worker bank could include retired nurses and directors of nursing, he said. Mental health of health-care workers weakening, says doctor The fourth wave of COVID-19 has been unrelenting for health-care workers in New Brunswick and across the country.  And health-care workers’ mental health is suffering because of it, says Dr. Katherine Smart, the president of the Canadian Medical Association. “I’ve been hearing, for the last few weeks, from many health-care professionals all across the country just about how difficult this fourth wave has been for them,” Smart told Information Morning Fredericton.  She said there are a lot of mental health programs for health-care workers in Canada, but she wants it acknowledged  that their mental state is often impacted by the system.  There’s been a lack of funding from different levels of government, Smart said. “That’s led to these systems that are cracked and broken that they’re trying to work within,” she said. Smart said people have worked tirelessly since the beginning of the pandemic to care for patients. But the fourth wave is different since hospitals are mostly being filled with unvaccinated patients in a time when vaccines are largely available to the general public.  “I think that reality is very challenging for people in health care right now,” she said.   Anti-vaccination protests held across the country in front of hospitals are very concerning and “demoralizing” for health-care professionals.  “They’re working around the clock to try and save people’s lives and provide exceptional care,” said Smart.  She said she’s heard from health-care workers who say they’ve been disturbed to see patients harassed and unable to access necessary care because of the protests.   The delta variant continues to cause havoc in the health-care system and has made health officials realize more people need to be vaccinated than the initial recommended 75 per cent of the population.   Smart said this fourth wave has been harder to face, because it isn’t what was expected. “We had this feeling of ‘OK, we’ve made it to the other side of this, the worst is over.'” Riverview announces proof of vaccination plans The Town of Riverview is advising people to allow extra time to enter its indoor recreation programs and facilities, as proof of COVID-19 vaccination verification is expected to “cause some delays.” Starting Tuesday at 11:59 p.m., people aged 12 and older will be required to show their record of immunization or medical exemption certificate and a government issued identification to access the programs and facilities. This follows the province’s announcement last Wednesday that proof of vaccination will be required to access certain New Brunswick businesses, services and events. Town staff or designates will verify a record of immunization or medical exemption certificate and government-issued identification when a person enters a program or facility, the town said in a news release Monday. Without the required records, visitors will not be permitted entry. “For recurring Town of Riverview programs, verification will be noted on your registration profile so that you will not be required to produce your records more than once,” the release said. But the town recommends people have a copy of their record of immunization they can easily access, such as on their smartphone or a photocopy in their wallet, in case a provincial inspector requests to see it. People who are no longer able to continue to participate in a program are asked to contact the department of parks, recreation and community relations by Sept. 24 at 4:30 p.m. for a full refund at [email protected], or 506-387-2024. “The Town of Riverview will be in contact with all regular user groups, rentals and associations to review the impacts and expectations of this additional safeguard,” the release said. New exposure notices  Public Health has identified new places in the province where people could have been exposed to COVID-19.  Fredericton region, Zone 3:  Sept.12 between 10 a.m. and noon and between 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. – Calvary Tabernacle (12 Legion St., Perth-Andover) Sept. 12 between noon and 6 p.m. – Scott’s Your Independent Grocer (24 Columbus St., Perth-Andover) Sept. 13 between 4 p.m. and 9 p.m. – Scott’s Your Independent Grocer (24 Columbus St., Perth-Andover) Sept. 11 between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m. – Scott’s Your Independent Grocer (24 Columbus St., Perth-Andover) Edmundston region, Zone 4: Sept.16 between 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. – Auberge Évasion de Rêves (11 Canada Rd., Saint-Quentin) Previous exposure notices Public Health has identified a case of COVID-19 in a person who may have been infectious while on the following flights: Sept.14 – Air Canada Flight 8502 – from Montreal to Fredericton departed at 1:25 p.m. Sept. 8 – Air Canada Flight 8790 – from Montreal to Saint John departed at 7:53 p.m. Sept. 5 – Air Canada Flight 8502 – from Montreal to Fredericton departed at 1:59 p.m. Sept. 4 – Air Canada Flight 8502 – from Montreal to Fredericton departed at 1:58 p.m.  Public Health has also identified other places in the province where people may have been exposed to the virus over the past two weeks. Moncton region, Zone 1: Sept. 13 between 4:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.– Miss Cue (459 Mountain Rd., Moncton) Sept. 12 between noon and 2 p.m. – Centennial Park playground (811 St. George Blvd., Moncton) Sept. 11 between 1:30 p.m. and 3:15 p.m. –  A & C Convenience Store laundromat (369 McLaughlin Rd., Moncton) Sept. 10 between 9 p.m. and midnight – Daquiri Smokehouse (3 Acadie Rd., Bouctouche) Sept. 10 between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. – Pirate de la Mer (10 Industrielle Rd., Bouctouche) Sept. 10 between 1:30 p.m. and midnight – P’tit Pub du Tchè (40 Irving Blvd., Bouctouche) Sept. 10 between 10:30 a.m. and 7 a.m. – Dr. Georges-L.-Dumont University Hospital Centre Emergency Room (330 Université Ave, Moncton) Sept. 10 between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. – McDonald’s (420 Paul St., Dieppe) Sept. 9 and 10 between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. – Supercuts (45 Plaza Blvd., Moncton) Sept. 9 between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. – Swiss Chalet (80 Champlain St., Dieppe) Sept. 8 between 7 p.m. and 2 a.m. – Dr. Georges-L.-Dumont University Hospital Centre Emergency Room (330 Université Ave, Moncton) Sept. 8 between 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. – Moncton Golf & Country Club clubhouse (212 Coverdale Rd., Riverview) Sept. 8 between 12 p.m. and 8 p.m. – Supercuts (45 Plaza Blvd., Moncton) Sept. 8 between 11 a.m. and 12 p.m. – Golf Town (52 Wyse St., Moncton) Sept. 8 between 7:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. – Dr. Georges-L.-Dumont University Hospital Centre outpatient clinic (330 Université Ave, Moncton) Sept. 8 and September 7 between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. – MacDonald Buick GMC Cadillac (111 Baig Blvd. Moncton) Sept. 7 between 9 p.m. and 11 p.m. – TH Sports Group, Sports Complex (184 Barker St., Moncton) Sept. 7 between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. – Supercuts (45 Plaza Blvd., Moncton) Sept. 6 between 4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. – Pizza Delight (526 Main St., Shediac) Sept. 6 between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. – Club Chasse et Pêche Haute-Aboujagne (326 Aboujagne Rd., Haute-Aboujagne) Sept. 5 between 10:30 p.m. and 1:30 a.m. – Casino New Brunswick (21 Casino Dr., Moncton) Sept. 5 between midnight and 2 a.m. – Second Floor Nightclub (837 Main St., Moncton) Sept. 5 between 2 a.m. and 2:30 a.m. – Mama’s Restaurant (806 Main St., Moncton) Sept. 5 between 6 a.m. and 5 p.m. – Shediac Market (10 Weldon St., Shediac) Sept. 4 between 10 p.m. and 2 a.m. – Cosmo dance night club (837 Main St., Moncton) Sept. 4 between 6 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. – Walmart (477 Paul St., Dieppe) Sept. 4 between 7:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. – Dieppe Market (232 Gauvin St., Dieppe) Sept. 4 between 4:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. – Kelsey’s Restaurant (141 Trinity Dr., Moncton) Sept. 4 between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. – Nita’s Bar and Grill (1999 Mountain Rd., Moncton) Sept. 4 between 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. – Champlain Mall (477 Paul St., Dieppe) Sept. 3 between 7:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. – Café Cognito (581 Main St., Moncton) Sept. 3 between 9:30 a.m. and 7 p.m. – Dieppe Market (232 Gauvin St., Dieppe)  Saint John region, Zone 2: Sept. 12 between 9:15 a.m. and 12:15 p.m. and between 5:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. – Abundant Life United Pentecostal Church (488 Main St., Sussex) Sept. 11 between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. – Canadian Tire (138 Main St., Sussex) Sept. 9 between 7 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. – Dollarama (286 Main St., Sussex) Sept. 8 between 11 a.m. and noon – Starbucks (15 Depot Ct., Saint John) Sept. 8 between 10:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. – Starbucks (641 Harding St., Saint John) Sept. 8 between 9:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. – Starbucks (30 Lacey St., Rothesay) Sept. 8 between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. – Dollarama (101 McAllister Dr., Saint John) Sept. 7 between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. – Walmart (450 Westmorland Rd., Saint John) Sept. 7 between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. – Superstore (168 Rothesay Ave., Rothesay) Sept. 5 between 10:30 a.m. and noon – Full Gospel Assembly (34 Mount Pleasant Ave. E, Saint John) Sept. 4 between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. – Old Navy (90 Consumers Dr., E Saint John) Sept. 4 between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. – Java Moose Coffee (519 Westmorland Rd., Saint John) Sept. 1 between 12:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. – Costco (300 Retail Dr., Saint John) Fredericton region, Zone 3:  Sept. 10 between 8:45 a.m. and 10:45 a.m. – Acorn Restaurant (10 Route 635, Lake George) Sept. 9 between 6:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. – Jimmy Flynn concert Capital Exhibit Centre (361 Smythe St., Fredericton) Sept. 8 between 6:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. – Turning Point Pentecostal Church (2031 Route 3, Harvey) Sept. 8 between noon and 5 p.m. – Kings Landing (5804 Route 102, Prince William) Sept. 7 between 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. – Northeast Christian College – Opening Service (128 River St., Fredericton) Sept. 7 between 4 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. – Northeast Christian College – Dinner (128 River St., Fredericton) Sept. 4 between 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. – Subway (Unit 3, F. Tribe Rd., Perth-Andover) Sept. 4 between 1:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. – Upper Miramichi Rural Community Park (6094 Route 8, Boiestown) Sept. 3 between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. – Tobique Youth Center (268 Main St., Tobique First Nations) Sept. 1, 2, 3, and Aug. 30 and 31 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. – Goodine Insurance (126 Ford Rd., Perth-Andover) Sept. 3 between 4:30 p.m. and 5 p.m. – Guardian Johnson Drug (16F. Tribe Rd., Perth-Andover) Sept. 3 between 2 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. – TCBY Yogurt (121 Route 550, Hartford) Sept. 2 between 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. – Swiss Chalet (961 Prospect St., Fredericton) Sept. 2 between 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. – Princess Auto (21 Trinity Ave., Fredericton) Sept. 2 between 6:30 p.m. and 7:10 p.m. – Wetmore Street Pub (530 New Maryland Highway, New Maryland Edmundston Region, Zone 4: Sept. 11 between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. – Grand Falls Farmers’ Market (68 Madawaska Rd., Grand Falls) Sept. 11 between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m., and Sept. 10 between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. – Atlantic Superstore (240 Madawaska Rd., Grand Falls) Sept. 2, 3, 7, 8, 9, and 10 between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. – Merritt Press (208 Main St., Grand Falls) Sept. 9 between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. – Atlantic Superstore (240 Madawaska Rd., Grand Falls) Sept. 8 and 9 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. – CCNB – Edmundston campus (35, rue du 15 août, Edmundston) Sept. 8 and 9 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. – UMCE Université de Moncton, Edmundston campus  (165 Hébert Blvd., Edmundston) Sept. 8 between 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. – Le Grand-Saut (155 Broadway Bd., Grand Falls) Sept. 8 between 5 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. – Jean Coutu (276 Broadway Blvd., Grand Falls) September 8 between 1:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. –  A&A Ouellette Entreprise Ltd (1423 Tobique Rd., Drummond) Sept. 7 between 2 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. – Walmart (494 Madawaska Rd., Grand Falls) Sept. 5 between 4: p.m. and 4:30 p.m. – Foodland (535 Everard H. Daigle Blvd., Grand Falls) Sept. 5 between 9:30 a.m. and noon – St. Patrick Catholic Church (2154 Route 130, Limestone Siding) Sept. 4 between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. – Burger King (100 Broadway Blvd., Grand Falls) Sept. 3 between 3 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. – Walmart (494 Madawaska Rd., Grand Falls) Sept. 3 between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. – Canadian Tire (383 Madawaska Rd., Grand Falls) Sept. 3 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. – Town Hall [Public Health Office, Mental Health Office, Social Development, Library, Police Office, Town Planning Office] (131 Pleasant Rd., Grand Falls) Sept. 2 between 8:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. – Theriault and Morin Dentist (148 Broadway Blvd., Grand Falls) Campbellton region, Zone 5: Sept. 12 and Sept. 11 between 3 p.m. and 10 p.m. – Tim Hortons (75 Roseberry St., Campbellton) Sept. 10 between 11 p.m. and 2 a.m.  – Tap’s Bar (42 Water St., Campbellton) Sept. 8 and 9 between 5 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.  – Gym Fitness (384 Dover St., Campbellton) Sept. 8 and 9 between 8:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.  – CCNB – Campbellton (47 Village Ave., Campbellton) Sept. 7 between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m.  – Atlantic Superstore (25 Savoie Ave., Atholville) Sept. 7 between 2:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. – Restigouche Walk-In Clinic (68 Water St., Campbellton) Sept. 7 between 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m.  – Salon de Coiffure Cheveux Modern Hair (59 Water St., Campbellton) Sept. 6 between noon and 3:30 p.m.  – Super 8 Hotel (Reception and Pool) (26 Duke St., Campbellton) Sept. 6 between 11 a.m. and noon  – Dairy Queen (84 Notre Dame St., Atholville) Sept. 5 between 2:45 p.m. and 4:45 p.m. – North Shore Cinema (52 Roseberry St., Campbellton) Sept. 4 and 5 – Life Church (198 Roseberry St., Campbellton) Sept. 4 between 7 p.m. and midnight – Balmoral Community Centre (21 Centre Rd., Balmoral) Sept. 4 between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m.  – Atlantic Superstore (25 Savoie Ave., Atholville) Sept. 4 – Restigouche Golf and Country Club (30565 McLeods Rte. 134, Campbellton) Sept. 3 between noon and 1 p.m.  – Chez Kim Restaurant (65 Water St., Campbellton) Sept. 3 between 6 p.m. and 7 p.m.  – Life Church (198 Roseberry St., Campbellton) Sept. 2 between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m.  – Atlantic Superstore (25 Savoie Ave., Atholville)  Acadie-Bathurst region, Zone 6: Sept. 10 between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.. – Pur & Simple (930 St. Anne St., Bathurst) Sept. 8 between 8 a.m. and noon – CCNB – Bathurst Campus, Main Building (725 Collège Rd., Bathurst) Sept. 4 between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. – Studio Olympus (1079 Principale Rd., Beresford) Sept. 2 between 10 p.m. and 12:15 a.m. – Dooly’s (426 B St., Tracadie-Sheila)  Miramichi region, Zone 7: Sept. 11 between noon and 1 p.m. – Fundy Line Restaurant (869 King George Highway, Miramichi) Sept. 10 between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. – River Signs (2311 King George Highway, Miramichi) Sept. 8 and 9 between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. – River Signs (2311 King George Highway, Miramichi) Sept. 9 between 7:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. – Jungle Jim’s Restaurant (2441 King George Highway, Miramichi) Sept. 8 between 3:30 p.m. and 5 p.m. – Cali.Co. Café (1 Allan St., Miramichi) The full list of possible exposures is updated regularly and is available on the government’s website. What to do if you have a symptom People concerned they might have COVID-19 can take a self-assessment test online. Public Health says symptoms of the illness have included a fever above 38 C, a new or worsening cough, sore throat, runny nose, headache, a new onset of fatigue, and difficulty breathing. In children, symptoms have also included purple markings on the fingers and toes. People with one of those symptoms should stay at home, call 811 or their doctor and follow instructions.

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