LIFESTYLE

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to create stress and anxiety for many Canadians

@ Helal Chowdhury
The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) continues to monitor COVID-19 epidemiological indicators to quickly detect, understand and communicate emerging issues of concern. Today, I presented an update on the latest epidemiology and modelling analysis. The following is a brief summary of the modelling results and the latest on national numbers and trends.
Since the previous longer-range modelling forecast on July 30th, 2021, the Delta-driven wave has continued to accelerate along the strong resurgence trajectory. The updated longer-range modelling forecast shows that cases could continue to increase quickly in the coming weeks, but strengthening measures to reduce spread, including for example reducing our contacts by 25%, could slow acceleration. Although Canada has made significant progress in increasing vaccine coverage, the latest modelling highlights an urgent need for more 18-39 years olds to get vaccinated and to speed up the overall rate of vaccination across the eligible population groups. Getting more people vaccinated faster could have a significant impact to slow the more contagious and severe Delta-driven resurgence to protect healthcare capacity and minimize societal disruption. As we head into the Labour Day weekend and return to more indoor activities this fall, this forecast reaffirms the importance of remaining vigilant and responsive as cases continue to rise, and underscores the need to take steps to reduce spread.
Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 1,507,051 cases of COVID-19 and 26,991 deaths reported in Canada. These cumulative numbers tell us about the overall burden of COVID-19 illness to date, while the number of active cases, now at 33,493, and 7-day moving averages indicate current disease activity and severity trends.
The latest national 7-day average of 3,486 new cases reported daily (Aug 27-Sep 2) is an increase of 22% over the previous week. After several weeks of rising case counts, national severity trends have begun to increase, primarily involving unvaccinated people. The latest provincial and territorial data show that an average of 1,230 people with COVID-19 were being treated in Canadian hospitals each day during the most recent 7-day period (Aug 27-Sep 2), which is 34% higher than last week. This includes, on average 442 people who were being treated in intensive care units (ICU), 29% more than last week and an average of 13 deaths were reported daily (Aug 27-Sep 2).

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