OTTAWA (AFP) - Canada's second wave of Covid-19 infections has led to 100,000 new cases reported in just the last two weeks, data compiled by public broadcaster CBC showed Friday (Dec 4).
There has now been a total of 400,031 cases in the country of 38 million people. The illness has been blamed for 12,470 deaths.
It took just 18 days to go from 300,000 to 400,000 cases in a second wave of Covid-19 that has prompted several regions to reintroduce measures to curb its spread.
They include Quebec province cancelling Christmas plans for many people with new rules restricting holiday gatherings and Alberta looking to set up field hospitals to help treat patients.
By comparison, Canada did not cross the threshold of 100,000 infections until June, three months after its first Covid-19 cases were reported.
In the past month, the average number of new daily cases has doubled to about 6,000.
Almost 75,000 people have been tested for the illness each day with 7.4 per cent having tested positive.
An average of 2,377 Canadians with severe infections have also been hospitalised each day, 466 of whom are being treated in intensive care units.
Both community transmission and outbreaks are contributing to the spread, Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam said in a statement.
She noted that cases are increasing among older adults, with those aged 80 years and older currently having the highest incidence rate.
More and larger outbreaks are occurring in long-term care homes and hospitals while also spreading to indigenous communities and other remote areas.
"These developments are deeply concerning as they put countless Canadians at risk of life-threatening illness, cause serious disruptions to health services and present significant challenges for areas not adequately equipped to manage complex medical emergencies," Dr Tam said.