New Brunswick to lift remaining COVID-19 restrictions, but experts warn of relapse – .

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New Brunswick to lift remaining COVID-19 restrictions, but experts warn of relapse – .


HALIFAX – As New Brunswick prepares to drop virtually all of its COVID-19 restrictions on Friday night, some infectious disease experts warn the province should prepare for an increase in cases this fall due to the highly contagious Delta variant .

Allison McGeer, an infectious disease physician at Sinai Health System in Toronto, says she is sympathetic to Premier Blaine Higgs’ decision to relax health protection measures – including the wearing of masks – given that the number of cases in New Brunswick remain low.

McGeer, however, says it’s clear the Delta variant is on the move in British Columbia, Alberta, and much of the United States, where the U.S. Centers for Disease Control now says Americans fully Vaccinees should resume wearing masks in indoor public spaces in areas where the virus is spreading rapidly.

McGeer says she has no problem easing restrictions in Atlantic Canada – where the number of cases remains low – as long as residents understand mask wear and other protective measures will likely be reimposed in the fall .

Colin Furness, an infection control epidemiologist, says he supports New Brunswick’s plan to abandon most health protection measures, but he stressed the plan will fail unless the province maintains the compulsory wearing of a mask in indoor public spaces.

Furness, a professor at the University of Toronto, says that once New Brunswickers start sharing indoor air without wearing masks, a fourth wave of infections is sure to be caused by the Delta variant.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on July 29, 2021.

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