Montreal·The Latest

COVID-19 in Quebec: What you need to know on Friday

As Quebec further loosens restrictions, bar terrasses and outdoor sports can reopen starting today, while the government is looking to reduce the province's surgery wait-list to 100,000 patients by March 2023. Here's what you need to know.

Bar terrasses and outdoor sports can reopen, Quebecers aged 60+ can move up 2nd dose appointments

Starting Friday, Quebecers 60 and over are eligible to move up their second vaccination appointment through the online booking system Clic Santé. (Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press)
  • Quebec reported 180 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday and one new death (none in the last 24 hours). 
  • Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 372,656 confirmed cases and 11,167 people have died. 
  • There are 244 people in hospital (a decrease of seven), including 59 in intensive care (a decrease of five). 
  • 98,455 vaccine doses were administered in the last 24 hours and 16,878 doses before Thursday, for a total of 6,500,850 doses administered in Quebec.
  • As of Friday, 77,4% per cent of Quebecers have received one dose of vaccine, and 10.9% per cent have received two doses.

Starting today, bar terrasses are allowed to reopen. 

For regions in the orange zone, this means a maximum of two adults from different households, or all occupants from one household per table, will be permitted.

But Premier François Legault said starting Monday, most regions — including Montreal, Laval and much of the surrounding area — will be at the yellow level, at which point people from two different households will be able to gather indoors and bars can reopen. 

As the province further loosens restrictions, funerals and weddings with a maximum of 50 people will also be allowed, and after July 8, high school proms will be permitted to take place outdoors with a limit of 250 people.

However, at least one board, the Lester B. Pearson School Board, has announced it will not plan any July proms. Most of its schools have already organized small events to honour graduates, it said in a statement released today, and the government's plan leaves "insufficient time to properly plan an event that normally requires months of preparation."

Starting today, outdoor sports and recreation activities are also allowed, with a cap of 25 people and brief contact. 

Surgery backlog 

The Quebec government is looking to reduce the province's surgery waiting list to 100,000 patients by March 2023.

Many surgeries were postponed in order to help the province's health network deal with the high number of COVID-19 patients.

Before the pandemic, that list was up to 125,000 patients, but it has since grown. An estimated 145,000 people are now waiting for surgery.

Health officials expect the wait-list to grow to 150,000 by October. At a news conference Thursday, Health  Minister Christian Dubé said he wants the list to stabilize by year's end, but the number won't start falling until 2022.

Second dose confusion

Quebecers 60 and over are now eligible to move up their second vaccination appointment through the online booking system Clic Santé.

But some looking to schedule an earlier appointment have faced problems with the website, and there is also confusion at some walk-in clinics. Wednesday morning, at Palais des congrès, some over 65 were told to come back later.

Other clinics have been accepting people who received their first shot more than eight weeks ago, regardless of their age.

People waiting for a second dose of Moderna will soon have access. The federal government is expecting seven million doses of this vaccine by the end of the month, which means Quebec will get 1.5 million.

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What are the symptoms of COVID-19? 

  • Fever. 
  • New or worsening cough. 
  • Difficulty breathing. 
  • Sudden loss of smell without a stuffy nose.
  • Gastrointestinal issues (such as nausea, diarrhea, vomiting).
  • Sore throat, runny or stuffy nose.
  • Generalized muscle pain.
  • Headache.
  • Fatigue.
  • Loss of appetite.

If you think you may have COVID-19, the government asks that you call 1‑877‑644‑4545 to schedule an appointment at a screening clinic.  

To reserve an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine, you can go on the online portal quebec.ca/covidvaccine. You can also call 1-877-644-4545.

Quebec government reminders for preventing the spread of COVID-19: 

  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Avoid touching your face.
  • Wear a mask or face covering is mandatory in enclosed public spaces across the province.
  • Stay at least two metres away from other people as much as possible. 
  • Self-isolate for 14 days after returning from a stay outside the country.

You can find information on COVID-19 in the province here and information on the situation in Montreal here

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