COVID-19: A ‘terrible milestone’ as New Brunswick surpasses 100 deaths

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New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs announced a “terrible milestone” on Thursday as the province reported two more deaths from COVID-19, bringing the death toll to 101.

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“These are not figures. These are people with family and friends,” said a stifled Higgs during a news conference.

“With every death we announce, our loved ones have been left behind who are mourning their loss.”

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The province also announced 67 new cases and 63 recoveries for a total of 762 active cases across the province.

Higgs said the circuit breaker measures, which began on October 8, would be extended for another seven days.

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Measures Zone 1 (Moncton area) as north and Zone 2 including Sainte-Anne-de-Kent and Havelock, Zone 3 (Fredericton area) as far north as in the upper St. John River valley and including Florenceville-Bristol, and Zone All of 4 (Edmondston area).

The circuit breaker will also be extended to include all Zone 5, Campbelton area, starting at 6 p.m. Friday and lasting at least 14 days.

Non-essential travel is not allowed in and out of these areas and residents should limit their contact within their domestic bubble.

“I know this news is difficult for those living in circuit breaker areas. You have worked hard. We recognize that and we thank you for doing so,” Higgs said.

“You’re making a difference. The numbers are slowly getting better. But we still have significant risk areas.”

On Wednesday, the province said it had activated its provincial rapid management team, led by extra-mural/ambulatory New Brunswick, at 23 locations.

The team provides “different levels of support depending on the needs of each location.”

An outbreak has been declared in 11 of those 23 sites, which include nursing homes, long-term care facilities and rooming houses.

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hurtful comments

Higgs also took some time to address the offensive comments he and his team received.

He acknowledged that the government made some mistakes during the pandemic, but said they always acted on the best information available at the time.

“No matter how hard one tries, and no matter how hard we try to fight the latest wave, all of us can be demoralised. We are all COVID-weary,” Higgs said.

“But individual comments matter. They hurt, they hurt my team, they hurt themselves, they hurt my family, they hurt our ability to get up and move as we fight this fourth wave Will happen.

“While I acknowledge that it comes with a job as chief, I am deeply concerned that these comments will continue to demoralize the same team we are counting on to get through this.”

He added that while times are tough right now, this is also an opportunity to “rise up and show how resilient we really are as a province.”

Higgs said that while he wants to get everyone vaccinated, it is “possibly impossible to achieve,” but he added that there is a “real possibility” of at least 90 percent of the eligible population being fully vaccinated.

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“So let’s focus on those who want to be a part of the success story. Let’s focus on those who will help us reach this milestone of over 90 percentile. Let us live a life with COVID.” Focus on what is worth living here in New Brunswick,” he said.

“I also want to be back to normal. Normal will be defined differently, but we will be able to live a life after COVID. “

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