The last coronavirus news from Canada and around the world on Monday. This file will be updated throughout the day. Web links to longer stories if available.
7h13 Belgian authorities, one of the European countries most affected by the coronavirus, warn that the number of cases is increasing at a “quite alarming” rate and that 10,000 people could catch the virus every day by the end of the week .
Yves Van Laethem, spokesperson for the Belgian COVID-19 crisis center, affirms that “all indicators continue to increase, it must be said, quite alarmingly, in all provinces and all age groups”.
On average, 4,145 new cases of the disease were recorded every day in Belgium in the week of October 2 to 8, an increase of 89% compared to the previous week, according to new data released on Monday. More than 6,500 new cases were reported last Wednesday alone.
Van Laethem said that “if this increase continues at the same rate, we could see 10,000 new cases per day by the end of this week.”
Since the start of the pandemic, more than 162,200 people have been infected with the virus in Belgium, which numbers around 11.5 million people. As of Monday, 10,191 people are believed to have died of the disease.
Last week, the government tightened its restrictions on coronaviruses. Close contact is limited to a maximum of three people outside of a household. In the capital Brussels, which registers more than 800 new cases every day, bars and cafes have been ordered to close for at least a month.
6 h 56 For the second day in a row, Iran announced its highest single-day coronavirus toll with 272 people killed.
The announcement by health ministry spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari on Monday also saw Iran announce its highest number of new cases in a single day with 4,206 new patients.
Iran has been battling the coronavirus since its first cases were announced in February.
6h21 The UK government is expected to announce new restrictions on business and socialization in major cities in northern England with high infection rates on Monday. But pubs, restaurants and other businesses are backing down, claiming they are not responsible for a resurgence of the epidemic.
Local authorities in hard-hit cities, such as Liverpool and Manchester, are seeking financial support for businesses due to close their doors and details on an exit strategy from local lockdowns.
After dropping in summer, coronavirus cases are on the rise in the UK as winter approaches. Under the new measures, regions in England will be placed in ‘tiers’, classifying them as medium, high or very high risk, and subject to restrictions of varying severity.
Liverpool Mayor Steve Rotheram said his city should be placed in the highest category.
“We were told we were going to level 3 – no ifs, no buts,” he said.
Rotheram, mayor of the Greater Liverpool region in north-west England, said local officials have yet to agree with Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative government on the exact restrictions.
Businesses, including gyms and pubs, are expected to be closed, but restaurants are pushing to be allowed to stay open. Rotheram said cities also wanted to know what the exit strategy would be for the measures, which are expected to be reviewed after a month.
He said local authorities want “some guarantee from the national government that if we hit some of the milestones we can get out of level 3 very quickly.”
Liverpool has one of the highest infection rates in the country, with more than 600 cases per 100,000 population.
Bar and restaurant owners questioned whether they were major sources of transmission and said the government had not shared the evidence to support this claim.
Manchester City Council chief Richard Leese said data from city public health officials “appears to show that there is no particular link between bars and restaurants and the transmission of COVID . “
But Calum Semple, professor of epidemic medicine at the University of Liverpool and a member of the government emergency science advisory group, said that “most epidemics occur within and between households and then in the retail and hospitality. ”
“Alcohol and people’s behavior are well known to be factors that lead to relaxed compliance with regulations, let’s put it politely,” Semple told the BBC. “And so that I can understand why this movement is happening.”
The government has announced a support program to pay two-thirds of the salaries of employees of companies told to close, but many in the pub and restaurant industry say that is not enough to save already struggling businesses .
England is already subject to national restrictions, including a 10 p.m. curfew on pubs and restaurants and a ban on assembling more than six people. Some regions have more stringent measures, such as a ban on mixing households. The rest of the UK is subject to similar and sometimes stricter restrictions. In Scotland’s two largest cities, Glasgow and Edinburgh, pubs have been closed for 16 days to quell the outbreak.
Without further action, there are fears that UK hospitals will be overwhelmed in the coming weeks at a time of the year when they are already busiest with the flu and other winter illnesses. The UK has experienced the deadliest epidemic in Europe, with an official death toll of 42,825.
4 h 01 Canadians who have missed their jobs because of COVID-19 can start seeking further financial assistance from the federal government today.
The new benefits come into effect as concerns rise over growing job losses, with Ontario and Quebec imposing targeted restrictions on restaurants, bars and fitness centers to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Applications for the new Canadian Recovery Benefit, which will pay $ 500 per week for a maximum of 26 weeks, can be made through the Canada Revenue Agency.
A new caregiver benefit also comes into effect today, after many calls since the start of the pandemic for additional support for parents and others forced to take time off work to care for a dependent. due to COVID-19.
Women have seen a disproportionate impact on their careers and incomes due to the pandemic because they have largely taken on the burden of child care and home schooling.
The caregiver benefit applies to people who are absent from work due to the closure of schools or daycare centers and whose children miss school or daycare because they have contracted the virus or may have be exposed.
This also applies to people forced to take time off work to care for family members who need specialized care that is not available to them due to COVID-19.
The federal government projects that 700,000 Canadians will apply for the caregiver benefit.
The government is also creating a new sick leave benefit that pays up to $ 1,000 over two weeks to people who cannot work because they have contracted COVID-19 or who must self-isolate because of the virus. .
The series of new, multi-billion dollar benefits take effect following an acrimonious political battle in Parliament that ultimately saw all parties vote for them, but not before the Liberal government rushes in for them.
10 p.m. Sunday: A COVID-19 outbreak has been declared at Western University’s London Hall residence after four people tested positive for the virus, the Middlesex-London Health Unit said.
“Declaring an epidemic is an important step in tackling any further spread of COVID-19 within the western student community,” said Dr Alex Summers, assistant medical officer of the Middlesex-London Health Unit, in a statement.
Individuals have been advised to self-isolate and the university has said it will deliver meals and ensure students are “well supported”.
Close contacts have been moved to a quarantine location and the health unit will follow up on screening measures.
Click here for more COVID-19 coverage starting Sunday.