Public Health reported 15 new cases of COVID-19 Friday.

The one case in Zone 1 (Moncton region) is an individual 40-49. This case is under investigation.

The nine cases in Zone 3 (Fredericton region) are as follows:

  • an individual 19 and under;
  • an individual 20-29;
  • four people 30-39;
  • an individual 40-49;
  • an individual 50-59; and
  • an individual 70-79.

Five cases are contacts of previously confirmed cases, three are travel related and one is under investigation.

The four cases in Zone 6 (Bathurst region) are as follows:

  • an individual 30-39;
  • an individual 40-49;
  • an individual 50-59; and
  • an individual 60-69.

All four cases are travel related. Three of the four cases are isolating out of the province.

The one case in Zone 7 (Miramichi region) is an individual 20-29. This case is a contact of a previously confirmed case.

The number of confirmed cases in New Brunswick is 2,113. Since yesterday, five people have recovered for a total of 1,942 recoveries. There have been 43 deaths, and the number of active cases is 127. Seven patients are hospitalized in total. Six patients are hospitalized in New Brunswick, including two in an intensive care unit. One patient is hospitalized out of province in an intensive care unit. Yesterday, 1,611 tests were conducted for a total of 321,482.

“As of today, more than 52 per cent of New Brunswickers aged 12 and older have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine,” said Health Minister Dorothy Shephard. “We can all be proud of the progress we have made so far, but we must continue to focus on making sure as much of our population as possible is fully vaccinated before we can let down our guard.”

Second death from VITT

Public Health confirmed today the death of a New Brunswicker, 50-59, who experienced a rare blood clot associated with low platelets known as vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia (VITT), following vaccination with the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. This was a previously reported case that was hospitalized.

“On behalf of all New Brunswickers, I extend heartfelt sympathies to the loved ones of this person,” said Shephard. “While this death is truly tragic, it is important to remember that the risks of dying from COVID-19 are far greater than the risks associated with receiving the AstraZeneca vaccine. I encourage everyone who is eligible to listen to the advice of Public Health and get vaccinated.”

The person received the AstraZeneca vaccine in mid-April and developed symptoms 17 days later. They went to an emergency room for treatment and were hospitalized.

“I offer my sincere condolences to the bereaved family and friends,” said Dr. Jennifer Russell, chief medical officer of health. “Out of the hundreds of thousands of doses of AstraZeneca vaccine administered as part of the country’s massive vaccination campaign, there will be rare cases where thrombosis will occur. However, the risks remain minimal compared to the risks, complications and potential consequences of COVID-19.”

Confirmed case at Kids Korral Day Care in Fredericton

A positive case of COVID-19 was confirmed at the Kids Korral Day Care in Fredericton on May 20 and the affected families have been notified. Public Health has directed that the children and staff, and their families, self-isolate for 72 hours while contract tracing is carried out. The facility is closed today. Families will be contacted directly with more information over the weekend. If you or a family member have been in close contact with a case, you will be notified by Public Health. If you do not hear directly from Public Health, you have not been identified as a close contact.

Update on Fredericton area in Zone 3

Public Health is closely monitoring the spread of the COVID-19 virus in the Fredericton area. So far contract tracing has been able to establish links between almost all of the confirmed cases in this cluster.

“As of now we are keeping Zone 3 at the Yellow alert level,” said Russell. “We have not imposed stricter measures because of how the virus is spreading, and not spreading, in the Fredericton area.”

AstraZeneca second doses now available

Those who received the AstraZeneca vaccine as a first dose at least eight weeks ago and are 55 or older are now eligible to receive a second dose. This is to be done with the informed consent of each eligible person.

There is currently a limited supply of AstraZeneca vaccine. To receive a second dose, schedule an appointment online at a clinic offered through the Vitalité or Horizon health networks or contact a participating pharmacy. To find out if a pharmacy has appointments available, check their website and social media channels prior to calling.

“AstraZeneca is one of the vaccines we are using in Canada to fight COVID-19,” said Russell. “Because we know some people prefer it to one of the MRNA vaccines, we want to provide it as an option. For those who received the first dose of AstraZeneca but do not want AstraZeneca as a second dose, we expect to receive direction from the federal government soon on using another brand of vaccine as a booster.”

Holiday guidance

Public Health reminds New Brunswickers to plan for a safe Victoria Day weekend.

Everyone should continue to follow public health guidelines, even those who have received one or both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine. Wear a mask, wash your hands and keep practising physical distancing. Keep your contacts to a minimum and celebrate within your Steady 15.

Anyone who is sick or has any COVID-19 symptoms should not participate in gatherings. Even if you have one mild symptom, go online to arrange to get tested, or call 811.

“It is imperative that everyone continue to follow the guidance of Public Health and to get tested when needed,” said Russell. “New Brunswick has been a leader in our response to this pandemic because we have worked together, and we have been vigilant. I encourage everyone to continue to be vigilant, to take the steps necessary to stay healthy and safe, and to get vaccinated when you are eligible.”

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Exposure notifications

Public Health follows a standard process when addressing instances where the public may have been exposed to a case of COVID-19. In cases where record-keeping can identify anyone who may have been exposed, officials contact these individuals directly and do not issue a separate announcement. In cases where officials cannot be certain of exactly who may have been exposed to the virus in a given location, Public Health issues an announcement to alert those who could have been affected and provides instructions.

Public Health has identified a potential public exposure to the virus at the following location and date in Zone 1 (Moncton region):

  • Costco, 140 Granite Dr., Moncton, on Sunday, May 9, between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Public Health has identified a potential public exposure to the virus at the following locations and dates in Zone 3 (Fredericton region):

  • Residence Administration Building UNB, 20 Bailey Dr., Fredericton, on Tuesday, May 11, and Wednesday, May 12, between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  •  Riverbend Golf Club, 541 Route 628, Durham Bridge, Saturday, May 15, between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.
  • Penniac Ultramar, 22 Route 628, Saturday, May 15, between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. and between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.
  •  Atlantic Superstore, 116 Main St., Fredericton, on Sunday, May 16, between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m.
  • Scholten’s, 325 Sunset Dr., Fredericton, on Monday, May 17, between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Public Health has identified a potential public exposure to the virus at the following location and date in Zone 4 (Edmundston region):

  • Tim Hortons, 54 Canada St., Saint-Quentin, on Sunday, May 16, between 3:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.

Public Health has identified a potential public exposure to the virus at the following location and date in Zone 6 (Bathurst region):

  • Tim Hortons, 1420 Vanier Blvd., Bathurst, on Sunday, May 16, between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m.

Public Health has identified a potential public exposure to the virus at the following location and date in Zone 7 (Miramichi region):

  • Kingsway Restaurant, 367 King George Hwy., Miramichi, on Saturday, May 8, between 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.

Public Health is now offering COVID-19 testing for all New Brunswickers who have been in a public exposure area, even if they are not experiencing any symptoms. Residents may request a test online or call Tele-Care 811 to get an appointment at the nearest screening centre.

People experiencing one or more symptom are also encouraged to get tested.

Reminder of Yellow level

All zones are in the Yellow level under the province’s mandatory order.

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