Canada reported zero COVID-19 deaths for the first time since March


FILE PHOTO: Provincial Phase 2 of the Resumption of Coronovirus Disease (COVID-19) ban as people walk into the Eaton Center shopping mall in Toronto, Ontario, June 24, 2020. REUTERS / Carlos Osorio / File Photo

TORONTO (Reuters) – Canada reported zero COVID-19 deaths in the last 24 hours for the first time since March 15, according to data from the Public Health Agency.

The number of deaths from the Canadian epidemic was 9,163 as on September 11, the same number of deaths on Sept 10, government data shows. From the previous days till September 11, the number of positive cases increased from 702 to 135,626.

With the relaxation of lockdown restrictions in most provinces and the reopening of in-class classrooms in schools, Canadian transitions have seen a slight uptick in recent times. Officials are on high alert to avoid the latest outbreak and provinces including British Columbia have imposed new restrictions to combat the spread of the virus.

Nevertheless, the situation in Canada seems relatively healthy compared to its southern neighbor. Across the border in the United States, the epidemic has killed more than 190,000 people and infected over 6.38 million people.

Canada’s experience of dealing with SARS or severe acute respiratory syndrome helped health officials to better prepare. SARS killed 44 people in Canada, the only country outside Asia to report deaths from that outbreak in 2002–2003.

Canada’s first recorded case of coronavirus was in Toronto on January 25. Both Ontario, the country’s most populous province, and neighboring Quebec turned into hot spots for COVID-19 infection.

Both provinces have long struggled with outbreaks in care homes. Canada’s first COVID-19 died on March 9 at a British Columbia long-term care facility.

As the COVID-19 cases began to appear in mid-March, Canada closed its international borders for all foreign nationals and conducted tests in an effort to isolate infected patients. Ontario and Alberta faced outbreaks among temporary foreign workers on farms and meat-processing plants, which slowed reopening in some areas.

Reporting by Denny Thomas and Moira Warburton; Editing by Sandra Maler and Leslie Adler

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