Statement from Chief Public Health Officer of Canada on February 28, 2021

From: Public Health Agency of Canada

February 28, 2021
Ottawa, ON
Public Health Agency of Canada

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to create stress and anxiety for many Canadians, particularly those who do not have ready access to their regular support networks. Through the Wellness Together Canada online portal, people of all ages across the country can access immediate, free and confidential mental health and substance use supports, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

As we continue to follow public health advice and limit our outings to keep everyone safer, we should not let that extend to the health visits that are necessary for maintaining our wellbeing now and into the future. Now, as ever, it is important to seek timely care for urgent medical concerns as well as to maintain prevention and wellness visits. Health and social service providers have put in place a range of safety measures to ensure everything from routine vaccinations, dental care, and screening procedures to mental health, chronic disease management and other health and well-being supports can be addressed safely. This includes a range of COVID-19 safety measures, such as staggered appointments, physical distancing, mask mandates and virtual appointments where possible. Limiting the overall health impacts of COVID-19 means we must maintain regular appointments and not delay reaching out for health, mental health and substance use supports for ourselves and our loved ones. All of these medical visits are essential outings – please do not delay!

As COVID-19 activity continues in Canada, we are tracking a range of epidemiological indicators to monitor where the disease is most active, where it is spreading and how it is impacting the health of Canadians and public health, laboratory and healthcare capacity. The following is the latest summary on national numbers and trends, and the actions we all need to be taking to maintain COVID-19 at manageable levels across the country.

Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 864,196 cases of COVID-19, including 21,960 deaths reported in Canada; these cumulative numbers tell us about the overall burden of COVID-19 illness to date. They also tell us, together with results of serological studies, that the vast majority of Canadians remain susceptible to COVID-19. As well, the emergence and spread of certain SARS-CoV-2 virus variants is an additional cause for concern. For the week of February 14-20, there were on average of 97,120 tests completed daily across Canada, of which 3.2% were positive for COVID-19. As of February 25th, a total of 1,010 variants of concern have been reported across Canada, including 964 B.1.1.7 variants, 44 B.1.351 variants and 2 P.1 variant.

/Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here.