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Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Sunday

Canada is seeing "steady declines" in COVID-19 cases, but the country's chief public health officer is urging Canadians to stay vigilant in the face of more contagious coronavirus variants.

Sask. says it will lift all COVID-19 restrictions by July 11 — including mask mandate

Jerry Sopatyk receives the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at the Saskatoon Tribal Council-run vaccination clinic inside SaskTel centre in Saskatoon on April 15. Saskatchewan's government said it will lift all public health measures by July 11 — including the mandatory masking and gathering size limits — even though the province hasn't reached its final COVID-19 vaccination target. (Kayle Neis/The Canadian Press)

The latest:

  • Canada to announce easing of some travel restrictions contingent on vaccination.
  • Fully vaccinated woman dies of COVID-19 at Ont. long-term care home.
  • Sask. says it will lift all public health measures by July 11 — including mask mandate.
  • Ont., Que. scale back administration of Pfizer vaccine for now amid delay.
  • Have a coronavirus question or news tip for CBC News? Email: COVID@cbc.ca.

Canada is seeing "steady declines" in COVID-19 cases, but the country's chief public health officer is urging Canadians to stay vigilant in the face of more contagious coronavirus variants.

"This virus is nimble & quick and loves a niche to play another trick," Dr. Theresa Tam said on Twitter on Sunday.

Tam said Saturday that the more infectious delta variant has surged by 66 per cent over the past week, and on Sunday added that "there are still areas in Canada with high incidence >200 cases/100,000 population."

"We can't let the steady declines in disease activity lull us into a sense that the job is done," she said.

"Perseverance and our two lines of defence will see us through: 1. Keeping up individual/public health measures 2. Getting Vaccination Coverage high."

So far, more than 20 per cent of eligible Canadians are fully vaccinated and more than 75 per cent have received at least one dose.

Tam has previously said that provinces should begin to lift public health restrictions only once 75 per cent of all adults have had at least one vaccine dose and 20 per cent are fully vaccinated.

Some provincial governments are doing just that.

Saskatchewan's government said it will lift all public health measures by July 11 — including the mandatory masking and gathering size limits — even though the province hasn't reached its final COVID-19 vaccination target.

People line up at a mobile COVID-19 vaccination site in Regina on Thursday. (Matt Howard/CBC)

Currently, 70 per cent of residents over the age of 18 have received their first dose, but only 69 per cent of all residents 12 and older got their first shots.

"As we are now so close to the final threshold, we are able to announce that Step 3 will be fully implemented on Sunday, July 11," Premier Scott Moe said Sunday in the province's COVID-19 update.

Initially the full implementation of Step 3 of the re-opening roadmap wasn't supposed to be triggered until 70 per cent of residents 12 and older got their first shot of vaccine.

In a video message on Twitter, Moe said the province will "hit that target in the next couple of days."

"You may wish to continue wearing your mask in certain situations," he added, "but that will be up to you."

The province's announcement comes the same week that neighbouring Alberta said it will lift almost all COVID-19 public health restrictions on July 1.

The province met the vaccine threshold required for the final stage of its three-step reopening plan on Thursday, with more than 70 per cent of eligible Albertans having received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Alberta recorded 100 new COVID-19 cases and an additional death on Sunday.


What's happening across Canada

As of 5:45 p.m. ET on Sunday, Canada had reported 1,408,835 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 11,759 considered active. A CBC News tally of deaths stood at 26,076. More than 32 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered so far across the country, according to CBC's vaccine tracker.

In British Columbia, Fraser Health Authority is continuing its 32-hour vax-a-thon clinic in Surrey.

Christine Mackie, director of operations with the authority, said about 5,700 people have made appointments for the 7,000 doses available at the Guilford Recreation Centre in Surrey.

Overnight clinics have been held in other places in Canada, but Fraser Health says this is the first in B.C.

WATCH | Festive 'vax-a-thon' atmosphere helped ease anxiety, says recipient:

COVID-19 vaccine recipients in Surrey say festive 'vax-a-thon' atmosphere helped ease anxiety over shot

3 months ago
0:34
The Fraser Health Authority hosted a 32-hour vaccine clinic at the Guilford Recreation Centre June 19 and 20 0:34

Manitoba logged 93 new COVID-19 cases on Sunday — its lowest daily increase since April 14 — along with six more deaths.

Meanwhile, at least seven post-secondary institutions in the province say they will not be returning to full, in-person classes for the fall semester. 

David Docherty, Brandon University's president and vice-chancellor, said physical distancing could still be required even if most Manitobans are vaccinated, posing challenges for universities to reintegrate everyone.

WATCH | Why vaccine mandates might not work in all settings:

Why vaccine mandates might not work in all settings

3 months ago
1:41
COVID-19 vaccines will play a critical part in protecting the health of students on campus this fall, but implementing a broad vaccination requirement might not make sense and could prove challenging to implement, says bioethicist Maxwell Smith. 1:41

Ontario registered 318 new COVID-19 cases and 12 additional deaths on Sunday.

Among those who died is a fully vaccinated 90-year-old woman who lived at a long-term care home in Kitchener.

The woman lived at the Village of Winston Park, where there is currently an outbreak of the virus. There are nine cases at the home — four among staff and five among residents. This is the first death during this most recent outbreak.

Quebec confirmed 103 new cases and two more deaths on Sunday.

In Montreal, public health officials are trying to cash in on playoff fever by offering a walk-in vaccination clinic outside the Bell Centre for Sunday night's Montreal Canadiens game. 

WATCH | Walk-in clinic at the Bell Centre aims to vaccinate Habs fans:

Walk-in clinic at the Bell Centre aims to vaccinate Habs fans

3 months ago
1:21
Health workers are sweetening the deal this weekend by throwing in a free hot dog for people who get their shot. 1:21

In the Atlantic provinces, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia each saw two new cases on Sunday. For Nova Scotia, it's the lowest number of new daily cases since April.

Yukon health officials have confirmed 29 new cases of community transmission among people who aren't vaccinated.


What's happening around the world

As of Sunday, a database of COVID-19 cases showed more than 178.2 million cases reported worldwide. The Johns Hopkins University tracker put the reported global death toll at more than 3.8 million.

In Africa, Uganda is one of several countries reporting their highest number of new weekly cases since the pandemic began, the World Health Organization Regional Office for Africa says. President Yoweri Museveni has introduced sweeping new anti-coronavirus measures, including a ban on all vehicular movement except for essential workers.

In Europe, Portuguese authorities have confirmed suspicions that the new delta variant of the coronavirus is driving a spike in cases in the Lisbon region. Portugal's National Health Institute said Sunday that the highly infectious variant that was first found in India has a prevalence of 60 per cent of new cases in the nation's capital.

In Asia, China has announced that more than one billion doses of COVID-19 vaccine had been administered. The pace of vaccinations has accelerated in the country of 1.4 billion people after a slow start. The total number of doses given doubled from 500 million in less than a month, according to government tallies.

In the Americas, the White House will finish allocating 80 million U.S.-made COVID-19 shots that it has pledged to ship abroad in the coming days, with shipments going out as soon as the countries are ready to receive them, a top U.S. official said.

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

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