Coronavirus news today: Toronto and Region of Peel join most of Ontario in Stage 3 of reopening today


The latest coronavirus news from Canada and around the world Thursday. This file will be updated throughout the day. Web links to longer stories if available.

6h54: Britain’s Health Secretary on Friday defended the government’s brutal reimposition of restrictions on social life in part of northern England, saying it was important to tackle new outbreaks of COVID-19 quickly.

Matt Hancock said that while this is not the “kind of decision that anyone would want to make”, the government had no choice.

“It’s important to act quickly as the virus is spreading and you need to make sure that you are doing whatever you can to stay ahead of the curve,” he told Sky News.

5 h 10: Vietnamese state media reported the country’s first death of a person with coronavirus on Friday as it grapples with a new outbreak after 99 days without any cases.

Thanh Nien newspaper said a 70-year-old man died after contracting the disease while being treated for kidney disease at a hospital in Da Nang where more than 90 cases were reported last week.

The Department of Health has not confirmed the death.

Dr Luong Ngoc Khue, head of the national administration for medical examinations and treatment, said at least six other elderly patients with COVID-19 are currently in critical condition. All of them have other underlying illnesses, he said.

4 h 01: Some parents and teachers balk at Ontario’s new back-to-school plan, saying it does not do enough to protect children from the risk of COVID-19.

The Ontario Parent Action Network says that instead of bringing children back to school safely, the province has “abandoned” them.

And the four major teachers’ unions say the plan puts the safety of staff and students at risk, saying the return to school is “underfunded.”

4 h 01: Statistics Canada will say this morning how the economy behaved in May and will provide its preliminary estimate for June to give a picture of the first half of the year marked by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The pandemic has already given the worst consecutive monthly readings in March and April, with drops of 7.2% and 11.6%, respectively.

4 h 01: People in Toronto and the Region of Peel can eat in a restaurant and watch a movie in a theater starting today, although they still have to follow the rules of physical distance and other health measures.

The two regions join most of Ontario in Stage 3 of its economic recovery, allowing most businesses and public spaces to reopen.

Toronto City Council has passed a series of additional health measures beyond those set by the province for today’s change, including capacity and table size limits for meals at the interior in restaurants.

4 h 01: The last number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Canada at 4 a.m. on July 31, 2020:

There are 115,799 confirmed cases in Canada.

_ Quebec: 59,131 confirmed (including 5,673 deaths, 50,886 resolved)

_ Ontario: 39,075 confirmed (including 2,772 deaths, 34,906 resolved)

_ Alberta: 10,716 confirmed (including 195 deaths, 9,113 resolved)

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_ British Columbia: 3,591 confirmed (including 194 deaths, 3,155 resolved)

_ Saskatchewan: 1,306 confirmed (including 18 deaths, 948 resolved)

_ Nova Scotia: 1,067 confirmed (including 64 deaths, 1,003 resolved)

_ Manitoba: 395 confirmed (including 8 deaths, 325 resolved), 14 presumptive

_ Newfoundland and Labrador: 266 confirmed (including 3 deaths, 259 resolved)

_ New Brunswick: 170 confirmed (including 2 deaths, 165 resolved)

_ Prince Edward Island: 36 confirmed (including 36 resolved)

_ Yukon: 14 confirmed (including 11 resolved)

_ Repatriated Canadians: 13 confirmed (including 13 resolved)

_ Northwest Territories: 5 confirmed (including 5 resolved)

_ Nunavut: no confirmed cases

_ Total: 115,799 (14 presumptives, 115,785 confirmed including 8,929 deaths, 100,825 resolved)

Learn more about Thursday’s evolving dossier


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