Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Jan. 30
COVID-19 hospitalizations dip in Ont. and Que., but reach record highs in N.L.
Canada's most populous provinces continued to report declining hospitalizations related to COVID-19 over the weekend as public health restrictions were scheduled to start easing in both Ontario and Quebec as of Monday.
Ontario reported 3,019 patients in hospital on Sunday, down by 420 from the day before, although not all health-care facilities share data on weekends.
It marks the fourth straight day of declining hospitalizations in the province, where the number of people allowed to attend social gatherings is set to increase Monday to 10 indoors and 25 outdoors until another planned increase on Feb. 21.
In Quebec, the Health Department says 2,895 people were in hospital Sunday, a decrease of 80 from the day before.
The easing of some restrictions in Quebec is set to include the reopening of restaurant dining rooms, with certain limits, more than a month after they were closed in response to surging cases of the virus's Omicron variant.
Meanwhile, horns blared across downtown Ottawa as protesters settled in for their second full day in the capital demanding the federal Liberal government end vaccine mandates and other pandemic-related restrictions.
What's happening across Canada
With lab-based testing capacity deeply strained and increasingly restricted, experts say true case counts are likely far higher than reported. Hospitalization data at the regional level is also evolving, with several provinces saying they will report figures that separate the number of people in hospital because of COVID-19 from those in hospital for another medical issue who also test positive for COVID-19.
For more information on what is happening in your community — including details on outbreaks, testing capacity and local restrictions — click through to the regional coverage below.
You can also read more from the Public Health Agency of Canada, which provides a detailed look at every region — including seven-day average test positivity rates — in its daily epidemiological updates.
In British Columbia, Vancouver says green bins will temporarily be collected every two weeks as it deals with staffing shortages due to COVID-19.
In the Prairies, health experts in Saskatchewan are criticizing Premier Scott Moe after he said "vaccination is not reducing transmission" in statement; Manitoba has extended current public health orders for at least another week; and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney is calling for an end to a massive vehicle blockade — a demonstration in support of the Ottawa convoy protests —that he says it is preventing access to the Canada-U.S. border.
In the Atlantic, 23 people are hospitalized because of COVID-19 in Newfoundland and Labrador on Sunday, setting a new record high for the province; Nova Scotia reported 92 people in hospital in designated COVID-19 units, up by five from the day before; and schools in both in both Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick are set to reopen on Monday.
In the North, some schools in the Northwest Territories will be allowed to return to in-person classes on Monday. Meanwhile, documents obtained by CBC News showed a third of rapid tests shipped to Yukon were distributed to mines, sparking criticism.
What's happening around the world
As of Sunday, more than 373 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University's case-tracking tool. The reported global death toll stood at more than 5.65 million.
In Asia, officials said Sunday they had sealed off several residential communities north of Beijing after two cases of COVID-19 were found. The Chinese capital is on high alert as it prepares to host the Winter Olympics opening Friday.
In Europe, Russia's daily count of new coronavirus infections surged to more than 121,000 on Sunday, an eightfold increase compared with the beginning of the month as the highly contagious Omicron variant spreads.
In the Americas, Brazilian health regulator Anvisa approved the sale of COVID-19 self-tests — already widely used in Europe and the United States — in the country's drugstores.
In Africa, fans of the continent's premier soccer tournament — which only allows fully vaccinated people to attend — can get vaccinated, tested and receive their immunization passes for the quarterfinal match between Egypt and Morocco outside the stadium in Yaoundé, Cameroon.
Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium in <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Yaounde?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Yaounde</a>, a few hours before the quarter-final matches between <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Egypt?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Egypt</a> & <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Morocco?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Morocco</a>, several tents were set up inside & around the stadium as part of <a href="https://twitter.com/AfricaCDC?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@AfricaCDC</a> support to Cameroon during <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/TotalEnergiesAFCON?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#TotalEnergiesAFCON</a> through <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SavingLivesLivelihoods?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SavingLivesLivelihoods</a>. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GetVaccinated?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#GetVaccinated</a> <a href="https://t.co/aeaxbzSg8K">pic.twitter.com/aeaxbzSg8K</a>—@AfricaCDC
With files from CBC News, The Associated Press and Reuters