OTTAWA (NEWS 1130) –
Vaccines continue to be the key to getting on top of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to new federal modelling, which shows Delta variant infections continue to accelerate across Canada.
According to Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam, the latest figures show an immediate acceleration in vaccine uptake for people 18 to 39 is needed.
“The bottom line is that millions of people across Canada remain unvaccinated,” she said Friday, noting there is still time to get people protected and get the pandemic under control.
Tam says slowing vaccination rates and early reopenings across the country have set the stage for a major resurgence.
“This is a crucial moment. We have a window of opportunity,” she said, adding with fall approaching and the return to more indoor activities on the horizon, “people are urged to maintain layers of personal protection, including masking and spacing.”
1/2 #COVID19 key concerns : today, I presented the results of updated #PHAC epidemiology & modelling analysis, which shows the Delta-driven 4th wave has continued to accelerate along the strong resurgence trajectory. https://t.co/2hm56Q1Epk pic.twitter.com/bO40m4AQxW
— Dr. Theresa Tam (@CPHO_Canada) September 3, 2021
Tam added hospital capacity could be exceeded by the Delta-driven resurgence.
If Canadians are not able to get COVID-19 back on track, Tam warns we could see numbers we have never seen yet in this health crisis.
Modelling shows Canada could see more than 15,000 new cases each day by the beginning of October if the rate of transmission remains as it is.
However, she notes there’s still time to change course. Canada’s top doctor says 12.5 million Canadians “need better protection,” including people who have not received a shot yet, those who are waiting for a second, children too young to get one, and many others.
“Getting yourself vaccinated and encouraging others who are eligible is the best way to protect them,” Tam said.
The window to make changes and avoid a further explosion of cases @cpho says as we head into fall.
"The moment you get people back indoors… we will see acceleration of transmission"
Some of the forecast models.#bcpoli #covid19 pic.twitter.com/ArkO16qJu2
— LizaYuzda (@LizaYuzda) September 3, 2021
The latest data shows that since the last federal modelling update, hospitalizations across Canada have more than doubled. Daily infections have also surged.
“Average daily case counts have increased rapidly from just over 640 per day nationally, to almost 3,500 a day,” Tam explained.
To date, more than 53-million doses of vaccines have been administered in Canada since December of last year. That means more than 84 per cent of Canada’s eligible population 12 years and older have received at least one dose of a shot, while 77 per cent are fully vaccinated.
“What is most encouraging is that vaccination is proving to be highly protective against severe illness. In recent weeks, from July the 18th to August the 14th, the average weekly rates of new cases in the unvaccinated was 12 times higher than in the fully vaccinated, while the rate of hospitalized cases was 36 times higher in unvaccinated compared to fully vaccinated,” Tam said.