Canada added 2,968 new cases of COVID-19 on Saturday, pushing the country’s total caseload to 906,206.
Another 30 fatalities linked to the virus were added as well, with the national death toll standing at 22,434. To date, over 852,500 patients diagnosed with the virus have recovered, while 26.3 million tests and 2.92 million vaccine doses have since been administered.
The new data comes as the country’s top doctor urged caution amid severe outcomes from the virus declining and COVID-19 restrictions being lifted across the country.
“As vaccination programs continue to expand across Canada, there is growing optimism that widespread and lasting immunity can be achieved through COVID-19 vaccination,” wrote Canada’s chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam in a statement Saturday.
“While vaccine programs begin to accelerate, it will be important to maintain a high degree of caution. Any easing of public health measures must be done slowly with enhanced testing, screening, and genomic analysis to detect variants of concern.”
Tam also continued to warn of the spread of new variants of concern across the country. As of March 12, a total of 3,133 cases of those variants have been confirmed across the country’s 10 provinces — with its increased rate of infection prompting concern over a potential third wave of the pandemic.
Saturday’s national case numbers paint a limited snapshot of the virus’ spread across Canada, however, as B.C., P.E.I. and both the Yukon and Northwest Territories do not report new cases over the weekend.
Ontario reported another 1,468 cases of COVID-19 on Saturday, as well as another 11 deaths. In Quebec, 775 new infections were tallied alongside nine more deaths.
Alberta’s total caseload on Saturday reached 138,036 after another 474 cases were added. The province also reported five new deaths.
Manitoba tallied another four deaths and 92 cases on Saturday, while Saskatchewan reported 153 infections and one new death.
In Atlantic Canada, only Nova Scotia reported new cases of COVID-19 with an additional four infections Saturday. Newfoundland and Labrador and New Brunswick reported zero new infections of the virus.
Nunavut also recorded new cases on Saturday, with two new infections.
Worldwide, cases of the virus continue to increase as over 119,023,000 infections have since been identified, according to Johns Hopkins University. Over 2.63 million people have since died from COVID-19, with the U.S., India, Brazil and Mexico continuing to lead in either cases or deaths.
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