Quebec Standard

Monday, February 26, 2024

Quebec offers 2nd booster shot to elders for the spread of Omicron subvariant


Key takeaways: 

  • The interim public health director says he stays happy regarding the situation, though masks stay on till April 15.
  • Dr. Luc Boileau, Quebec’s interim director of public health, stated Wednesday the mask order in public places will not be raised earlier than scheduled in mid-April.

Quebec’s interim public health director says a new round of vaccinations is on the path to combat back against yet another COVID-19 wave.

Citizens of long-term care and retirement homes will be first on the list to receive another booster by early next week, said Dr. Luc Boileau, speaking at a press conference Wednesday.

He told any Quebecer aged 80 and up will also have access to the latest dose, as will those who depend on in-home care through the public health system.

Boileau said cases and hospitalizations are again on the hill, and the chance of catching and transmitting the virus stays high.

“I request you all to be cautious,” said Boileau, telling the Omicron subvariant BA.2 as a “game-changer.”

Also read: Anti-poverty groups ask the sense of Quebec’s $500 payout

Rapid tests are available for free in pharmacies in Quebec

He said the subvariant is 30 to 50 percent more infectious than Omicron, and that’s why cases are growing everywhere.

Boileau hesitates to call the recent wave the 6th wave.

Boileau said he has told provincial health authorities on Tuesday to be ready for the anticipated peak in cases and the new round of vaccinations but urged it is too early to say if the region is undergoing the sixth wave.

He said he anticipates a pitch in cases and hospitalizations, but it won’t be as destructive as the fifth wave.

“Let’s wait before talking regarding a sixth wave,” Boileau said. He stated public health officials would better understand where this wave is running in the coming days.

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