By Barry Ellsworth
TRENTON, Canada (AA) – Canada is reporting a record number of cases of COVID-19 in its two most populated provinces because of a “cavalier attitude” toward the pandemic particularly in younger adults, health officials said Monday.
“I think you have to take special precautions,” said Dr. David Williams, head of Ontario’s medical officer of health, as the province experienced a single day record of 700 cases reported Monday.
He said a second “undulating wave” of the virus is upon the province and a “cavalier attitude” toward the pandemic must stop. Williams said there needs to be a renewed focus on wearing masks, staying home if you can or if you feel sick and not gathering in large groups.
“We are in the midst of it [pandemic] again,” he said at a news conference. “It is going to take everyone doing their part [to curtail it].”
In Quebec, Canada’s second most populated province, 750 new cases were reported Monday and officials said they anticipated naming “red zones” that because of swelling numbers will be subject to more strict regulations.
As of Monday, Canada had more than 153,000 cases and 9,256 deaths but that number could reach 16,000 victims by year’s end unless people started taking public health guidelines seriously again.
And yet people are still flaunting health officials’ advice.
At least 1,000 enthusiasts gathered for a car show at the Ontario beach town of Wasaga Beach on Saturday and augmented police forces were on hand to enforce health measures.
But the crowd was so large that it was impossible to police as a significant number did not wear masks and social distancing could not be enforced.
A vaccine is the real hope to tame the virus and more than 100 teams of scientists are in the hunt globally to develop and test a vaccine.
Canada has at least eight possible vaccine candidates registered with the World Health Organization.