Even if Quebec “is on the right track”, the curfew may be extended after February 8, due to the number of hospitalizations still too high, especially in Montreal.
For the past ten days, the number of new cases of COVID-19 has started to decrease, said Prime Minister François Legault on Thursday, taking stock of the pandemic.
“The curfew is working. We are heading in the right direction, ”he said, thanking Quebeckers for their efforts.
But after 11 months of battle against the virus, “we still have a long way to go before us,” he said.
Currently, more than 1,450 COVID-19 patients are being treated in our hospitals. “It’s too much” to put an end to the load shedding and reduce waiting lists, regrets Mr. Legault.
“I want to be very clear today: even if the number of cases decreases, as long as the number of hospitalizations is going to be as high as that, we cannot think, in the coming weeks, that we will reopen everything” , he warned.
It will therefore be necessary to redouble your patience before being able to return to non-essential shops, bars and restaurant dining rooms.
This is even more true in Greater Montreal, where we find the vast majority of people hospitalized, around 1,100 currently.
“We see that it is not the same development in all regions”, acknowledged the Minister of Health, Christian Dubé.
It is also preparing to return soon to its color alert level system, which will be revised.
“We don’t want to play yoyo. So that’s why I like to tell people better, there: Hospitalizations will have to drop much more than what we see there before starting to release, ”added Mr. Legault.
The possibility of extending the curfew comes at a “particularly difficult” time, commented Dr. Geneviève Beaulieu-Pelletier, clinical psychologist and associate professor at the University of Quebec in Montreal.
“For those who already found these measures very restrictive, we can expect that it will exacerbate the irritation,” she warns.
As for the spring break, the Prime Minister prefers to respect collective agreements rather than cancel them.
However, he maintains his request to the federal government to ban international flights. However, he considers the imposition of a mandatory quarantine at the hotel at the expense of travelers arriving from abroad (see other text) as a good alternative to protect themselves from new variants of the coronavirus, which cause fears of the worst.
Mr. Legault also announced that vaccination is now over in CHSLDs, where 36,000 residents have received a first dose.
Another good news: the decrease in the number of cases makes it possible to move further and further away from the heartbreaking choices that the application of the prioritization protocol for access to intensive care would require.