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Tuesday, December 06, 2022

Quebec reports 15,000th death linked to COVID-19 since start of pandemic

MONTREAL – Quebec has recorded 15,000 deaths linked to COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic, according to data published Saturday on the province’s Open Data website.

The numbers show that there were 23 additional virus-linked deaths in the province in the past 24 hours.

Quebec has recorded more deaths from COVID-19 than any other province in Canada. As of Friday, there had been a total of 39,182 deaths linked to the disease nationwide, according to federal government data.

In a press conference on Thursday, Quebec’s interim public health director acknowledged that the province has seen a “large” number of deaths. But Dr. Luc Boileau said that many of the province’s COVID-19 deaths include people who were infected with the disease but who died due to some other condition.

In early January, a study involving several hospitals in the province found that 30 percent of COVID-19-related deaths occurred over a two-week period and were not caused by the virus.

“COVID was there, but it was not … the main cause of death,” Boileau said. “We are never satisfied with the fact that there are people who will die from it, but the numbers are no different from other jurisdictions.”

Dr Francesca Rubulotta, chief of critical care at McGill University Health Center in Montreal, said her hospital has had more deaths than many other facilities because patients are referred there after treatment fails elsewhere.

“Most of the people currently being treated in critical care wards are patients who have either decided not to vaccinate, which is quite disturbing,” he said in a recent interview. “Or, unfortunately, they got a transplant and are immunized.”

He added that the other patients have been ill for a long time and have suffered severe damage to their lungs.

Hospital treatment and follow-up care have improved over the past two years and vaccination has led to less severe cases, but some patients still die, he said.

According to Quebec’s Open Data site, there were 2,252 people in hospital with COVID-19 on Saturday, a drop of 38 a day earlier. The number of people in intensive care decreased by six from the previous day and now stands at 74.

Data shows that 1,557 new cases were detected on Friday with PCR test, which is reserved for certain high-risk groups.

Quebec’s Department of Health does not regularly provide COVID-19 updates on weekends.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on April 30, 2022.

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