No new COVID-19 cases Saturday after double bubbles expanded
Expanded bubbles help provide support, friendship during pandemic
There are no new cases of COVID-19 in Newfoundland and Labrador for the second straight day.
According to a news release from the provincial government Saturday, the province's total caseload remains at 261. By region, there are 243 cases in the Eastern Health region, eight cases in the Central Health region, four in the Western Health region and six in the Labrador-Grenfell Health region.
There are three active cases of the virus in the province, as 255 people have recovered. Active cases are the total cases minus recovered cases and deaths.
The province has had only four new cases of COVID-19 in the month of May.
By age, there are:
- 22 people with the virus 19 and under.
- 38 between 20 and 39.
- 39 between 40 and 49.
- 58 between 50 and 59.
- 57 between 60 and 69.
- 47 aged 70 and above.
One person is in hospital due to the virus.
The province crossed 12,000 tests Saturday, as 12,095 people have now been tested for the virus — up 188 from Friday.
The number of COVID-19 related deaths in the province remains at three.
Expanding bubbles to help people reconnect: Fitzgerald
As the province moves closer to Alert Level 3, Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Janice Fitzgerald announced Friday each double bubble in Newfoundland and Labrador can expand by up to six people.
She said the move was made to help people reconnect outside of digital means, such as Zoom or Skype.
"We want to give people some break from this social separation that we've had," she said. "Even though people can connect virtually, there's nothing like being able to see someone in person."
"The intent here was to expand it to somebody who could give you that kind of support that you need. That friendship, camaraderie, and someone you frequently saw [before the pandemic]."
New members of a bubble do not have to be from the same household, but people cannot be changed once they have been introduced into their double bubble.
Fitzgerald said expanding a double bubble is not mandatory, and she encouraged people to keep the number of close contacts as low as possible to keep the risk of spreading the virus low.
The province's next live COVID-19 briefing will be on Monday.