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Coronavirus: What’s happening in Canada and around the world on Saturday

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The latest:

Canada has hit two of the vaccination targets government officials have previously said were necessary for the easing of public health restrictions imposed due to COVID-19.

According to CBC’s vaccine tracker, just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years of age and older — are now fully vaccinated. And just over 75 per cent of eligible Canadians have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Federal modelling completed in the spring suggested that if 75 per cent of eligible Canadians had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and 20 per cent had two, provinces could safely begin easing restrictions on public movement without overwhelming hospitals again.

The modelling also suggested that when 75 per cent of eligible residents are fully vaccinated, officials could begin to loosen personal measures such as physical distancing and wearing masks.

But chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam said those models didn’t include the highly contagious delta variant, which she said surged by 66 per cent over the past week.

Across the country, more than 31 million vaccine doses have been administered so far.


What’s happening across Canada

As of 7:45 p.m. ET on Saturday, Canada had reported 1,408,157 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 12,253 considered active. A CBC News tally of deaths stood at 26,054. More than 31.7 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered so far across the country, according to CBC’s vaccine tracker.

In British Columbia, more than 75 per cent of eligible residents have received at least one vaccine dose.

In an attempt to get vaccines in the arms of as many people as possible, Fraser Health announced a 32-hour “vax-a-thon” in Surrey, B.C., this weekend at Guildford Recreation Centre, beginning at 11 a.m. local time on Saturday.

In Alberta, Premier Premier Jason Kenney announced on Friday that almost all public health restrictions will be lifted on Canada Day after the province met its vaccination target.

WATCH | Alberta plans to lift COVID-19 restrictions by July 1:

Alberta said it plans to reopen fully by July 1 now that 70 per cent of those eligible have gotten one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, and some experts are worried that a fourth wave is inevitable because of the delta variant. 2:07

Saskatchewan announced it is setting July 11 as the tentative date for Step 3 of its reopening plan, which will see the majority of public health measures related to COVID-19 lifted.

Manitoba logged 151 new COVID-19 cases and three more deaths on Saturday.

Ontario registered 355 new cases of COVID-19 and an additional 13 deaths, as more than 20 per cent of eligible residents aged 18 and older have now been fully vaccinated — one of the primary criteria laid out by the province for advancing into the next phase of reopening.

A pharmacist prepares a COVID-19 vaccine shot in Toronto on Friday. (Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press)

Quebec confirmed 160 new cases and nine additional deaths on Saturday.

In Prince Edward Island, more than 7,000 people have signed up for a P.E.I. Pass, which allows travellers with proof of vaccination from outside the province to enter P.E.I. without self-isolating.

Nova Scotia saw six new cases on Saturday as mobile testing is being expanded in Cape Breton and West Hants.

A COVID-19 vaccination clinic is seen at the Ummah Masjid Mosque in Halifax on Saturday. (Haley Ryan/CBC)

New Brunswick tallied five more infections, but vaccination rates continue to rise. More than 76 per cent of eligible residents have now had at least one shot.

In Newfoundland and Labrador, 75 per cent of eligible residents have now had at least one shot of a COVID-19 vaccine, a benchmark that has been cited as one that needed to be met as part of the province’s reopening plan. 

Yukon health officials reported 29 new cases. Dr. Brendan Hanley, the territory’s chief medical officer says 31 of Yukon’s 87 active cases are believed to be caused by the gamma variant of the virus, which was first identified in Brazil.


What’s happening around the world

As of Saturday, a database of COVID-19 cases showed more than 177.9 million cases reported worldwide. The Johns Hopkins University tracker put the reported global death toll at more than 3.8 million.

In the Americas, thousands took to the streets across Brazil on Saturday to protest against President Jair Bolsonaro’s pandemic response as the country’s death toll surpassed 500,000.

WATCH | Anti-Bolsonaro protests held across Brazil:

In Africa, Uganda is tightening its lockdown measures to try to stem a surge in coronavirus infections in the East African country that is seeing an array of variants.

In Asia, Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike says plans to hold mass public viewings of the Olympics at six sites have been cancelled, as worries grow about the coronavirus pandemic amid one of the slowest vaccine rollouts in the developed world. 

In Europe, soaring cases in Moscow have caused alarm among Russian officials, who have increased measures to obstruct the spread.

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