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

Quebec reached a grim milestone Friday, surpassing 50,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19, nearly 60 per cent of all confirmed cases in Canada. There are 530 new cases, but that's the lowest daily number since April 1.

Confirmed cases surpass 50,000, with 530 new cases — the lowest daily number since April 1

Masks are made by Medicom at a Montreal factory. Masks are not obligatory on public transit and other public spaces where it is difficult to maintain social distance, but they are strongly recommended by Quebec public health. (Ivanoh Demers/Radio-Canada )

The latest:

  • Quebec has 50,232 confirmed cases of COVID-19, and 4,363 people have died, an increase of 530 cases and 61 deaths from a day earlier.
  • There are 1,265 people in hospital (a decrease of 66), including 172 in intensive care (a decrease of six). Here's a guide to the numbers.
  • Hair dressers, tattoo parlours and other personal-care businesses will be able to reopen June 15 in the Montreal area and Joliette.
  • Quebec's courts and other tribunals can resume activities June 1.
  • Find out where Montreal's mobile testing sites are today.

Quebec reached a grim milestone Friday, surpassing 50,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19, nearly 60 per cent of all confirmed cases in Canada. There were 61 more deaths recorded, for a total of 4,363.

There is a bright spot, however: there are 530 new cases, but that is the lowest daily number since April 1. 

The government announced Friday that businesses that offer personal-care services, ranging from hair cuts to pedicures, will be to reopen allowed starting June 15 in the Montreal and Joliette areas.

Travel ban lifted within Nunavik

There have been no active COVID-19 cases in Quebec's Inuit territory for more than three weeks, so the Kativik regional government is scaling back restrictions on travel between communities in Nunavik — although it's not ready to welcome visitors from the south.

On Friday, Kativik released its plan to ease restrictions, as people are eager to visit their families, work, hunt, fish and engage in traditional activities in neighbouring communities.

"The lockdown has taken a toll on the mental health of many citizens," the regional government said. However, there will be little opportunity to get around until June 8, when Air Inuit will be allowed to fly between communities again.

Projections for Montreal

If Montrealers fail to follow public health guidelines, the metropolitan area could see a dangerous spike in hospitalizations and deaths from COVID-19 by July, according to the latest projections by government-affiliated experts. 

The projections also suggest that if, on the other hand, a large majority of Montrealers continue to adhere to the guidelines — such as keeping two metres apart and wearing masks — it is possible to contain the spread of the virus while resuming some economic activities. 

Researchers linked to Quebec's public health research institute, the INSPQ, presented their findings late Thursday.

Self-isolation at rooming house

The executive director of a downtown Montreal rooming house wants public health officials to improve their approach to isolating COVID-19 patients after a resident there tested positive and had no place else to go.

The non-profit Vilvavi runs two rooming houses in Montreal and another in Quebec City, offering programs designed to help vulnerable people regain their autonomy.

Residents have their own rooms with kitchenettes, but they share bathroom facilities.

Patient attendant dies in Gatineau

An employee at CHSLD Lionel-Émond in Gatineau, Que., has died of COVID-19, the first health-care worker in western Quebec to fall victim to the respiratory illness.

The 56-year-old man's union said he worked for the local health authority, CISSSO, for 26 years. He died Wednesday night.

The man is the fifth patient attendant in Quebec to die from the virus.

A guide to the numbers

We have updated our set of indicators tracking the ongoing threat of COVID-19 in province.

Here is a look at the number of cases reported on a daily basis.

Other info you should know

A doctor from northern New Brunswick who recently visited Quebec has tested positive for COVID-19. He is now linked to five other cases in Campbellton, N.B., and exposed at least 150 people there to the virus.

An epidemiologist in Ottawa is calling on the city to reopen at least some public washrooms for the people who rely on them.

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