UHN Director of Health Services Tamara Dus injects a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at The Michener Institute in Toronto on Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

Canada passes 500,000 COVID-19 cases following Saskatchewan report

Canada surpassed 500,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Saturday as infections continued to surge while the vaccine rollout reached its final province.

Saskatchewan pushed the country over the grim threshold Saturday, with 252 new cases reported as well as eight more deaths.

Earlier in the day, Ontario and Quebec, the two provinces hardest hit by the pandemic, each recorded daily case counts beyond 2,000.

It’s the fifth consecutive day Ontario has exceeded 2,000 new positive tests, with Saturday’s tally at 2,357.

The province, which is currently holding emergency talks to consider additional health measures, also recorded 27 new deaths.

Five regions in Ontario are scheduled to be in the province’s lockdown stage as of Monday.

Quebec recorded 2,038 new infections and 44 new deaths related to the novel coronavirus.

The latest 100,000 cases racked up in just 15 days across the country, marking the shortest growth period since the pandemic was declared in March.

It took six months for Canada to register its first 100,000 cases of the virus, another four to reach 200,000, less than a month to hit 300,000 and 18 days to hit 400,000.

Meanwhile, immunizations are now officially underway in all provinces, with New Brunswick the last to launch its inoculation program.

The province delivered its first Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine this morning, to an 84-year-old resident of a long-term care facility.

Pauline Gauvin told the health worker who administered the injection she felt comfortable having it, and, after asking what her next step in the process was, Gauvin was told she could go back to the waiting area.

“(I’ll) go mix with the crowd,” she said, smiling.

Other residents and health-care workers were set to get the shot today as part of the province’s plan to administer the vaccine to 1,950 people.

New Brunswick accepted an offer from the owner of a bluefin tuna exporting company in eastern Prince Edward Island for a loan of two freezers that can store the vaccine, which has to be kept below -70 C.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

City of Red Deer says its roundabouts have sharply reduced the number of injury collisions at a pair of busy intersections. Alberta Transportation wants to incorporate five roundabouts into plans to twin Highway 11 from Sylvan Lake to Rocky Mountain House. Photo by PAUL COWLEY/Advocate staff
Highway 11 roundabouts will increase safety based on Red Deer’s experience

Injury collisions sharply reduced at roundabout intersections in city

As of Friday, Alberta has under 10,000 active COVID-19 cases. (Image courtesy CDC)
One new COVID-19 death in Red Deer, Alberta under 10,000 active cases

Alberta reported an additional 643 COVID-19 cases Friday. The province now has… Continue reading

About 110 students from Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools participated in March for Life rally in Edmonton May 9. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Red Deer high school has COVID-19 case

St. Joseph High School in Red Deer confirmed a positive COVID-19 case… Continue reading

Lacombe High School logo.
Two more COVID-19 cases at Lacombe Composite High School

Lacombe Composite High School confirmed two more positive COVID-19 cases at the… Continue reading

World Juniors’ referee Mike Langin makes a called during the Canada vs. Slovakia at the 2021 World Junior Championship at Rogers Place in Edmonton, Dec. 27, 2020. (Photo by Matthew Murnaghan/Hockey Canada)
Former Sylvan Lake man lives his dream at World Junior Championships

Mike Langin was one the 25 Canadian officials who worked during the tournament

Former Alberta Premier Rachel Notley shakes hands with Joel Ward, former Red Deer College President and CEO, as Notley announces that the college is on the path to grant degrees. Red Deer-South MLA Jason Stephan says university status is not a necessary condition for offering degrees. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Future of Red Deer University increasingly uncertain

MLA’s college update says RDC more like SAIT and NAIT than a university

There are two confirmed COVID-19 cases at Red Deer College. Photo by Mamta Lulla/Advocate staff
Central Albertans were promised a university

Central Albertans were promised a university

Paramedics take away an elderly patient at the Tendercare Living Centre, long-term-care facility during the COVID-19 pandemic in Scarborough, Ont., on Wednesday, December 23, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Blood thinners help moderate COVID cases and may reduce strain on ICUs, trials show

Blood thinners help moderate COVID cases and may reduce strain on ICUs, trials show

This image released by Baobab Studios shows an avatar representing actress Daisy Ridley, left, with her character, Magda, at the virtual reality premiere of her short film "Baba Yaga." It’s being called the first ever VR movie premiere. And consumers can experience the premiere space and the film now through Oculus Quest. (Baobab Studios via AP)
‘Baba Yaga’ introduces with a virtual reality movie premiere

‘Baba Yaga’ introduces with a virtual reality movie premiere

With new album, Epik High endures in South Korea music scene

With new album, Epik High endures in South Korea music scene

A man wears a face mask as he walks by a storefront window advertising after Christmas sales on Boxing Day in Montreal, Saturday, Dec. 26, 2020. Statistics Canada says retail sales climbed 1.3 per cent to $55.2 billion in November, rising for the seventh straight month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
Retail sales rise 1.3 per cent to $55.2 billion in November as online shopping surges

Retail sales rise 1.3 per cent to $55.2 billion in November as online shopping surges

Joe Biden, then the U.S. vice-president, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau take their seats at the start of the First Ministers and National Indigenous Leaders meeting in Ottawa, Friday, Dec. 9, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Look past Keystone XL to areas of Canada-U. S. alignment, Trudeau suggests

Look past Keystone XL to areas of Canada-U. S. alignment, Trudeau suggests

In this Dec. 18, 2020 photo, pipes to be used for the Keystone XL pipeline are stored in a field near Dorchester, Neb. The leader of a group promoting Indigenous participation in oil and gas development as a solution to poverty on reserves says the cancellation of the Keystone XL pipeline by President Joe Biden is a major setback. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Chris Machian /Omaha World-Herald via AP
Indigenous business coalition leader says Keystone XL denial will hurt communities

Indigenous business coalition leader says Keystone XL denial will hurt communities

Financial numbers are seen on the digital ticker tape at the TMX Group in Toronto, Ont.'s financial district on Friday, May 9, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darren Calabrese
S&P/TSX composite ends losing week down on faltering energy sector

S&P/TSX composite ends losing week down on faltering energy sector

Most Read