The first Quebec doctor dies from COVID-19

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A 44-year-old specialist from the Montérégie region of Quebec became the first physician in Quebec to die from complications from COVID-19.

Dr. Horacio Arruda, director of public health in Quebec, confirmed the doctor’s death during the province’s daily briefing on the pandemic on Thursday.

He said the doctor had not treated patients.

“This healthcare worker was not working in the hospital or long-term care facilities – he contracted the disease elsewhere,” said Arruda.

The investigation into the doctor’s death will follow the same protocol as all other deaths in Quebec, he said.

Arruda said that at the very least, the death of the man should remind us that “the virus can strike anywhere.”

“This tells us that we are all vulnerable and that it is important to follow the rules,” said Arruda.

With government hinting at loosening containment rules in the coming weeks, Arruda said it was important that people continue to follow physical distance guidelines around colleagues “who may be asymptomatic” .

The president of the Federation of Quebec Specialists, Diane Francoeur, said in a tweet that the doctor had worked in the community health sector. Francoeur offered condolences to the doctor’s family, as did Arruda.

“When I talk about the number of people who die, I know the drama that takes place in each family, for colleagues and loved ones,” he said.



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