Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Nov. 7

British Columbia on Saturday joined several other provinces in introducing further public health measures in an effort to curb a surge in COVID-19 infections, on the same day that Ontario rolled back restrictions in several of its COVID-19 hot spots.

B.C. announces new public health orders in COVID-19 hot spots as Ontario rolls back restrictions

Ontario Premier Doug Ford arrives to deliver baked goods and coffee to front-line health workers at Toronto's Humber River Hospital ahead of the province's budget announcement on Thursday. (Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press)

The latest:

  • B.C. announces new public health restrictions in 2 regions.
  • Health measures loosening in several Ontario COVID-19 hot spots today, as province reports record in new daily cases.
  • Quebec premier pens open letter to province's residents urging unity this winter amid COVID-19.
  • Manitoba reports 7 new COVID-19 deaths, a new daily record for the province.
  • U.S. sets daily record with more than 130,000 new virus cases on Saturday.
  • Polypropylene is now recommended in masks. Should I be concerned? Your mask questions answered.
  • Have a coronavirus question or news tip for CBC News? Email us at

British Columbia on Saturday joined several other provinces in introducing further public health measures in an effort to curb a surge in COVID-19 infections on the same day that Ontario rolled back restrictions in several virus hot spots.

In a rare weekend COVID-19 briefing, B.C. Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced new restrictions for the Vancouver Coastal Health and Fraser Health regions for a two-week period.

Under the order, which takes effect Saturday evening, residents of the two affected health regions are being told not to engage in social interactions outside their immediate household. Businesses and recreation centres are also prohibited from holding indoor group physical activities for two weeks, including yoga, spin, dance, and group fitness classes.

Henry strongly recommended that travel in and out of the Fraser Health region and Vancouver Coastal Health region be limited to essential travel only.

WATCH | B.C.'s top doctor talks about hard-hit Fraser Health region:

Why is the Fraser Health region the epicentre of B.C.'s coronavirus cases?

2 years ago
Duration 1:50
Dr. Bonnie Henry says there are a number of factors, including a large number of essential workers and multigenerational families.

The restrictions come as B.C. reported 567 new cases of COVID-19 and one new death. On Friday, the province set a new record for the second straight day with 589 new cases.

In Ontario, the province's new tiered, colour-coded COVID-19 restriction framework came into effect at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday. The system classifies each public health unit as a grey, red, orange, yellow or green zone based on factors including caseload, transmission levels and health-care capacity. 

Peel Region, which has seen rising cases in recent weeks, is the sole red zone, which means indoor restaurant dining is now limited to 10 people and gyms limited to 10 people indoors.

Health officials in Peel had asked that the region remain under a modified Stage 2 — the restriction classification system previously used by the government — which involved more stringent rules such as a ban on indoor dining in restaurants and bars.

WATCH | Peel Region deemed red zone under Ontario's new pandemic plan:

Peel Region to move to Red–Control level of Ontario’s pandemic plan

2 years ago
Duration 0:57
Earlier this week, the province rolled out its new tiered, colour-coded COVID-19 restriction framework. The red zone is less restrictive than the current modified Stage 2: restaurants and bars can serve indoors but only 10 customers are allowed inside, and gyms can open with restrictions.

York Region and Ottawa, which previously were also under a modified version of Stage 2, are now classified as orange zones. The orange level limits bars and restaurants to 50 people indoors, with no more than four seated together.

Toronto, which continues to see the most COVID-19 cases in the province, is staying in modified Stage 2 for another week.

The Ontario Hospital Association (OHA) has criticized the government's decision to proceed with reopening, calling it "reckless" in the face of continuing spread of the coronavirus.

Ontario reported 1,132 new cases of COVID-19 on Saturday, its highest ever single-day increase in cases, and 11 deaths, with 852 recoveries.

According to documents obtained by CBC News, 100 COVID-19 patients are in intensive care units as of Friday night — the highest since June.

Meanwhile, a rapid response team was being sent to a Winnipeg long-term care home that is the site of a COVID-19 outbreak after eight deaths in 48 hours, according to the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority. Revera, the company that runs the home, said at least one of the deaths was not a COVID-19 patient.

Manitoba on Saturday reported seven new COVID-19 deaths, marking a provincial record for most fatalities announced in a day. The province also recorded 271 new cases of the illness.

New restrictions are also coming to another region of Manitoba, with the province's chief public health officer saying that simply asking people to follow public health advice hasn't worked.

In a press conference Friday, Dr. Brent Roussin said the Southern Health region — which includes larger population centres like Steinbach, Portage la Prairie, Winkler and Morden — will move to the highest level of the province's pandemic system on Monday. It joins Winnipeg, which moved to the red level earlier this week.

A COVID-19 test site is pictured last month in Portage la Prairie, which is part of the Southern Health region that is moving to the red, or critical, level of Manitoba's pandemic response system on Monday. (Lyzaville Sale/CBC)

Among the new restrictions the Southern Health region will see are all restaurants and bars closed for dine-in service, and capacity at cultural or religious gatherings reduced to 15 per cent, or 100 people, whichever is lower. 

Alberta added 919 new cases and five more deaths due to the illness on Saturday, another all-time high for the province. That comes after 609 new cases on Friday, and the previous record of 802 new cases on Thursday.

The province said due to technical issues, it was unable to provide further data like a breakdown of those numbers by region, and said that information will be available on Monday.

In Saskatchewan, new public health orders took effect on Friday, with masks now mandatory in indoor public spaces in Saskatoon, Regina and Prince Albert.

The allowable size of private gatherings province wide has also been reduced to 10 from 15. The province said that much of the recent spread of COVID-19 has occurred in private settings and in homes.

Saskatchewan reported 116 new cases of COVID-19 on Saturday — the second-highest reported number of COVID-19 cases for one day in the province — and two additional deaths.

What's happening across Canada

As of 6 p.m. ET on Saturday, provinces and territories in Canada had reported a cumulative total of 259,488 confirmed or presumptive coronavirus cases. Provinces and territories listed 213,094 cases as recovered or resolved. A CBC News tally of deaths based on provincial reports, regional health information and CBC's reporting stood at 10,484.

Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada's chief public health officer, said the number of people experiencing severe illness continues to increase and Canadians must remain vigilant as their activities move indoors during the colder weather.

"I am advising Canadians to avoid the 3Cs settings wherever possible; closed spaces with poor ventilation, crowded places where many people gather and close contact situations can amplify spread of the virus," she said in a statement released on Saturday.

Quebec reported 1,234 new COVID-19 cases and an additional 29 deaths on Saturday, as Premier François Legault urged residents in an open letter to stay united and maintain their efforts to keep COVID-19 at bay this winter.

In the letter published Saturday morning, Legault thanked Quebec residents for their efforts so far and struck a hopeful tone, saying, "I want us to celebrate Christmas in Quebec."

He cautioned that "it won't be a big Christmas with the whole family, but if grandparents could see their grandchildren at last, that for me would be a great victory."

Pedestrians protect themselves from the cold and COVID-19 as they wait for a light to change in Montreal last week. (Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press)

Nova Scotia reported four new cases on Saturday, bringing the number of active cases in the province to 20, the highest number since May 23.

New Brunswick reported three new cases, all in the Fredericton region, and one new recovery on Saturday.

Newfoundland reported two new cases and one new recovery on Saturday. Health officials there are asking people who are returning from work at Manitoba Hydro's Keeyask Generating Station to self-isolate after news of an outbreak at the site earlier this week.

Until recently, P.E.I. was the only province in Canada with no active cases of COVID-19. That changed Friday when it announced two new cases, men in their 20s and 50s who had travelled outside Atlantic Canada.

In the North, Nunavut confirmed its first COVID-19 case on Friday, in Sanikiluaq. 

Residents in the community of about 900 people are being asked to remain at home and to avoid mingling with those who are not part of their households, and all travel to and from Sanikiluaq is now restricted to cargo and emergencies.

What's happening around the world

As of Saturday afternoon, more than 49.6 million of COVID-19 cases have been reported worldwide, with more than 32.6 million of those listed as recovered, according to a coronavirus tracking tool maintained by Johns Hopkins University. The global death toll stood at more than 1.2 million, the U.S.-based university reported.

In the Americas, the United States on Saturday reported a record increase in new coronavirus cases for a fourth consecutive day with at least 130,000 new infections. The seven-day rolling average of new daily cases in the U.S. is approaching 100,000 for the first time, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

Total U.S. cases since the start of the pandemic stand at 9.7 million, with more than 236,00 deaths. 

An attendant talks to a person waiting in their car at a coronavirus testing site in El Paso, Texas, on Oct. 31. The seven-day rolling average of new daily cases in the U.S. is approaching 100,000, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. (Cengiz Yar/Getty Images)

Meanwhile, President Donald Trump's chief of staff, Mark Meadows, has been diagnosed with the coronavirus. Meadows travelled with Trump in the run-up to election day and last appeared in public early Wednesday morning without a mask as Trump falsely declared victory in the vote count. Democrat Joe Biden was declared the winner of the election on Saturday. 

Mexico's health ministry reported on Saturday 6,810 additional coronavirus cases and 485 more deaths, bringing the official number of cases to 961,938 and the death toll to 94,808.

In Europe, Germany's disease control centre reported a daily record of 23,300 coronavirus infections on Saturday, surpassing the record of 21,506 set the day before.

Germany has imposed significant new restrictions to prevent the health system from being overwhelmed. A four-week partial shutdown took effect on Monday, with bars, restaurants, leisure and sports facilities closed and new contact restrictions imposed. Shops and schools remain open.

Police detain a demonstrator during a rally against the government's restrictions amid the COVID-19 pandemic in Leipzig, Germany, on Saturday. (Kai Pfaffenbach/Reuters)

In the Asia-Pacific region, Malaysia's government says it will expand movement restrictions to most parts of the country after coronavirus cases tripled in a month. Another 1,168 new cases were reported Saturday, bringing the total tally to 39,357 — compared to just 13,993 cases a month ago. The death toll stands at 282.

Senior Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob says the entire peninsula of Malaysia, except for three states, will be placed under a conditional movement control order from Monday until Dec. 6.

In the Middle East, Iran reported 9,460 cases of the coronavirus on Saturday, breaking its previous single-day record earlier this week. The Health Ministry also registered 423 additional deaths, pushing its confirmed death toll to 37,832, the highest in the Middle East.

Iranians walk next to a sign advising people to wear masks on their way to shop in Tajrish square in Tehran on Nov. 1. (Atta Kenare/AFP/Getty Images)

Iran has seen a recent surge of infections as the government resists a centralized lockdown to salvage its sanctions-hit economy. However, authorities have recently tightened movement restrictions and introduced travel bans and mask mandates as hospitals in the hard-hit capital of Tehran near overwhelming numbers of patients.

Countries in Africa have reported more than 1.8 million confirmed COVID-19 cases since the pandemic started, with more than 1.5 million recoveries and more than 44,000 deaths.

South Africa has been the hardest-hit country on the continent, with more than 734,000 cases and more than 19,000 deaths reported.

With files from The Associated Press, The Canadian Press and Reuters

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