Christmas gathering decision by Dec. 11

By Gordon Lambie
Christmas gathering decision  by Dec. 11
(Photo : Facebook)

Quebec Premier Francois Legault said Tuesday afternoon that a decision on whether or not people will be able to have small family gatherings in the week of Christmas will be made by Dec. 11. That being said, however, he pointed out that there is increasing stress on the healthcare system at the moment and that things need to change in order for the plan to go ahead as currently announced.
“We’re not heading in the right direction,” the premier said, highlighting the 6,542 sick leaves or preventative leaves among staff across the province at the moment, as well as the fact that the province has now surpassed 700 hospitalisations due to COVID-19. He warned that some facilities are approaching their capacities, and that this will be an important factor in the decision-making process over the next week or so.
Legault also hinted at tighter restrictions coming for shopping malls and big-box stores in the coming days. Asked about whether there were outbreaks linked to these locations, Provincial Public Health Director Dr. Horacio Arruda said that there have not been but that stores, particularly during the holiday season, lend themselves to the formation of crowds, which are a risk factor for viral spread.
“It’s a preventative measure,” he said.
The province reported 1,177 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, bringing the total number of people infected to 143,548. The data also report 28 new deaths, for a total of 7,084. The number of hospitalizations increased by 26 compared to the previous day, for a cumulative total of 719. Among these, the number of people in intensive care increased by 4, for a total of 98.
There were 62 new cases reported in the Estrie Region on Tuesday, 52 of whom were in the Sherbrooke or Granby areas. The region reported no new deaths, but five more hospitalizations (for a total of 29) and one fewer person in intensive care (for a total of five)
Since the start of the pandemic, 4,746 have contracted COVID-19 in the Estrie, 3,994 of whom are considered to have recovered.

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