Quebec recorded 1,599 new cases of COVID-19 and two more pandemic-related deaths Monday as the third wave deepens in the province.
The caseload, which remains one of the highest in the country, stands at 327,982. Meanwhile, recoveries have topped 304,000.
The health crisis has killed 10,744 Quebecers to date. The staggering death toll accounts for nearly half of Canada’s fatalities.
The number of hospitalizations linked to the new coronavirus jumped by 22 to 630. This includes 142 patients in intensive care, a rise of three from the previous day.
The vaccination efforts continued to ramp up over the weekend. The province says 52,705 doses were administered Sunday, with more than 1.9 million jabs given to date.
The most recent screening information shows 27,132 tests were carried out Saturday.
Vaccination open to the chronically ill in Montreal
Quebec has also expanded its vaccination campaign to include those with chronic illnesses in Montreal starting Monday.
People who are being treated for certain illnesses can be vaccinated if they get the go-ahead from their doctor.
Eligible people include those who are hospitalized for a condition such as heart, kidney or lung disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and some forms of immunosuppression.
Montrealers receiving outpatient treatment for dialysis, organ donor recipients and many cancer patients can also receive one of the vaccines, which are mostly being administered in hospitals.
Health Minister Christian Dubé also took to Twitter on Monday to say that walk-in clinics will be maintained for anyone who is 55 and over to get their first shot of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. The move comes amid high demand, he said.
Last week, the government expanded its inoculation rollout to include essential workers — such as teachers and first responders — in Montreal.
— With files from The Canadian Press
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