All of Quebec is now out of the province’s highest pandemic alert level amid a continued decline in the number of new COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths.
Montreal, Laval and several smaller municipalities — the only parts of Quebec that remained at the red alert level — moved to the lower orange level today.
That allows gyms and restaurant dining rooms to reopen and sees high school students return to in-person learning full-time instead of having online classes on alternating days.
In Quebec’s largest city, it’s the first time since the end of September that restaurant dining rooms have been allowed to open, though orange zone restrictions set a limit of two adults who don’t share an address per table.
Restrictions were easing in several other parts of the province as well, with some regions moving to the province’s lowest alert level, the “green” level, which allows indoor gatherings of up to 10 people.
The change comes after the province reported no additional deaths on Sunday and 179 new cases of COVID-19.
-From The Canadian Press and CBC News, last updated at 7 a.m. ET
What’s happening across Canada
As of early Monday morning, Canada had reported 1,392,563 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 24,194 considered active. A CBC News tally of deaths stood at 25,724. More than 26 million COVID-19 vaccine doses had been administered so far across the country, according to CBC’s vaccine tracker.
Vaccine-maker Moderna is seeking authorization from Health Canada to allow its COVID-19 vaccine to be administered to adolescents, the company said Monday. The company’s mRNA vaccine is currently authorized for use in people aged 18 and up in Canada.
The Massachusetts-based company has also submitted an application to the European drug regulator seeking conditional approval for its COVID-19 vaccine’s use in adolescents, and said in a statement it will file for an emergency use authorization with the U.S. FDA.
The Pfizer-BioNTech mRNA COVID-19 vaccine was approved for use in adolescents aged 12-15 by Health Canada in early May. The Pfizer vaccine had previously been authorized for use in people aged 16 and up.
In Atlantic Canada on Sunday, a total of 20 cases of COVID-19 were reported — with 12 in Nova Scotia, five in Newfoundland and Labrador and three in New Brunswick. There were no new cases reported in Prince Edward Island.
Dr. Jennifer Russell, New Brunswick’s province’s chief medical officer, urged people to sign up for vaccines over the weekend as the province tries to meet its goal of having administered a first dose of vaccine to 75 per cent of the eligible population by the end of Monday.
“There’s thousands of appointments available today, and tomorrow and we are going to be pushing right till the end,” Russell said over the weekend.
Ontario, meanwhile, reported 10 additional deaths and 663 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday.
In the Prairie provinces, Manitoba reported three additional deaths on Sunday and 221 new cases of COVID-19. As of Sunday, 346 Manitobans who had contracted COVID-19 were in hospital, including 99 in ICU. While most were in Manitoba, patients were also being cared for in Ontario, Saskatchewan and Alberta.
Saskatchewan health officials on Sunday reported no new deaths and 73 new cases of COVID-19.
In Alberta, there were no new deaths reported on Sunday and 231 new cases of COVID-19. The number of patients with COVID-19 in intensive care in Alberta fell below 100, standing at 96 as of Sunday.
Across the North, there were no new cases in Nunavut or the Northwest Territories on Sunday. In Yukon, meanwhile, officials declared an outbreak at a gold mine after three people tested positive for COVID-19.
British Columbia will report updated figures covering the weekend later Monday.
-From CBC News, The Canadian Press and Reuters, last updated at 8:30 a.m. ET
What’s happening around the world
As of early Monday morning, more than 173.3 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University’s coronavirus tracking tool. The reported global death toll stood at more than 3.7 million.
In Africa, Uganda on Sunday reimposed a strict lockdown that included the closure of schools and the suspension of inter-district travel to help beat back a surge in cases.
In the Asia-Pacific region, key Indian cities reopened for business after a devastating second wave of coronavirus that killed hundreds of thousands.
Residents of the southern Chinese city of Guanzhou will not be able to leave unless they can show that it is absolutely necessary to do so, following an outbreak of COVID-19 that has sickened dozens of people in recent days.
The Philippines will open up its vaccination drive this week to include around 35 million people working outside their homes, such as public transport staff, in a bid to help curb COVID-19 transmission and to open up the economy, officials said.
Japan’s southernmost prefecture of Okinawa is closing many schools to contain the nation’s worst per capita rate of coronavirus infections.
In the Americas, President Joe Biden’s meeting with leaders of the G7 in an English seaside village this week will usher in a new focus on rallying U.S. allies against common adversaries — the COVID-19 pandemic, Russia and China.
In the Middle East, the United Arab Emirates reported 1,968 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday and three additional deaths, local media reported.
In Europe, the European Medicines Agency highlighted guidance for doctors, which calls for them to avoid heparin when treating rare blood clots and low platelet counts in patients who received AstraZeneca’s or Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccines.
Many frustrated British travellers, meanwhile, were heading home on Sunday from a shorter-than-expected holiday in the Algarve before a 10-day quarantine comes into force early next week due to rising infections in Portugal.
-From The Associated Press, Reuters and CBC News, last updated at 7:50 a.m. ET