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The latest news on COVID-19 developments in Canada on Friday, June 18, 2021

The latest news on COVID-19 developments in Canada (all times eastern):

9 p.m.

B.C. Premier John Horgan says he's received his second dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine.

Horgan shared a photo to social media Friday afternoon showing him holding a completed COVID-19 vaccination card.

He says in the post that the best vaccine is the first vaccine you're offered.

It comes a day after provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said there is no wrong choice for a second COVID-19 vaccine dose despite recommendations from a federal panel that people who received AstraZeneca first should choose Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna for a second shot.


6:15 p.m.

B.C. health officials say more than three-quarters of eligible adults have received a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, as the province reports 109 new cases.

There are 1,389 active cases of COVID-19, along with one new death.

Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry say 76.7 per cent of eligible adults have received a vaccine, and the province has administered 4.29 million doses.

Of those, 823,371 are second doses.


5:45 p.m.

Alberta is reporting 124 cases of COVID-19 and three more deaths.

The province says there are 2,336 active cases and, of those, 1,749 are the more contagious variants of concern.

There are 237 in hospital due to the virus, with 58 of those patients in intensive care.

A total of 2,283 people in Alberta have died from COVID-19 since the pandemic began last year.


4:45 p.m.

The Federal Court of Canada has upheld the constitutionality of the federal government's quarantine hotel program.

Today's ruling written by Chief Justice Paul Crampton says that pandemics, like wars, require sacrifices to save lives and prevent broad-based suffering.

He adds that anyone engaging in behaviour that poses a risk to the health and safety of others cannot expect the law to prevent the state from performing its essential function of protecting its citizens from that risk.

The ruling does take aim at border officials for not informing one of the applicants about the location of her quarantine hotel, nor her right to retain a lawyer, saying both moves violated her constitutional rights.

But Crampton affirms the constitutionality of the overall program.

A government order that went into effect on Feb. 14 mandates that anyone entering Canada from abroad must stay in a federally approved hotel for the first three nights of a 14-day quarantine.

Travellers are expected to pay for their government-approved accommodations while awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test they have to take on arrival.


4 p.m.

The Manitoba government is easing some restrictions on child and youth programs as COVID-19 numbers continue to drop. 

The province is reopening summer day camps as of July 1 for kids aged 11 and under, who will be in cohorts that cannot exceed 20. 

The province is also allowing school-aged children to return to child-care centres as of July 1.


3:45 p.m.

Saskatchewan is reporting 98 new cases of COVID-19 today.

One person from the northwest zone who was in their 70s has died.

Ninety-five more people have recovered, leaving the province with 763 active cases.

The province is also reporting 81 people in hospital, including 10 in intensive care.

Saskatchewan continues to inch closer to the vaccination threshold for Step 3 of the province’s reopening road map.

Currently, 69 per cent of Saskatchewan adults have received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Step 3 is scheduled to begin three weeks after 70 per cent of this age group have received their first dose.


3:20 p.m.

Nova Scotia says it has asked the provincial Supreme Court to lift an injunction against illegal gatherings during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Premier Iain Rankin's office says a hearing in the court has been set for Tuesday.

A judge granted the injunction on May 14.

The court order was primarily aimed at two anti-mask protests including one planned for Citadel Hill in Halifax on May 15 by a group called "Freedom Nova Scotia.''


1:35 p.m.

Manitoba is reporting 189 new cases of COVID-19 and four deaths. 

However, six earlier cases have been removed due to a data correction, for a net increase of 183.


1:10 p.m.

Some Manitoba doctors are urging the provincial government to back off its plan to reopen the economy July 1 until COVID-19 numbers drop much further.

A group of 11 physicians has written to the Progressive Conservative government to say the province is not taking into account the Delta variant, which is more transmissible and spreading quickly.

Dr. Dan Roberts, who specializes in critical care, says it is "completely irrational" to ease restrictions with the province's current daily case counts and test positivity rates.


12:50 p.m.

New Brunswick is reporting three new cases of COVID-19 today.

All are in the Fredericton area and involve two people in their 70s and one person in their 80s who are contacts of previously confirmed cases.

The province has 54 known active cases.

Six people are in hospital, including two in intensive care as a result of the infection.


12:20 p.m.

Nova Scotia is reporting 11 new cases of COVID-19 today.

Health officials say nine cases have been identified in the Halifax area and two in the eastern health zone which includes Cape Breton.

The province has 93 active cases with six people in hospital, including three in intensive care as a result of the infection.

As of Thursday, 752,599 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered with 73,600 people having received their booster shot.


11:15 a.m. 

Quebec is reporting 127 new cases of COVID-19 and two more deaths attributed to the novel coronavirus.

Health officials say hospitalizations decreased by three to 175, while 39 people were listed in intensive care, a drop of two.

The province added 103,391 doses to its tally for more than 7.15 million shots administered since the campaign began.

There are 1,505 active cases in the province.


10:30 a.m.

Ontario reports there are 345 new cases of COVID-19 in the province and one death linked to the virus.

Health Minister Christine Elliott says there are 85 new cases in Waterloo, 50 in Toronto, and 50 in Peel Region.

The Ministry of Health says 378 people are in hospital with the novel coronavirus — 352 in intensive care and 221 on a ventilator.

Ontario says that more than 210,000 doses of a COVID-19 vaccine were administered since Thursday's report, for a total of over 12.1 million doses.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 18, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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