(Quebec) The Legault government is seriously considering extending the special emergency measures in Quebec and Levis due to the outbreak of new cases of COVID-19 in the two regions which will be announced Thursday.
Updated April 8, 2021
In a rare gesture, Prime Minister Francois Legault will hold a press conference at 5 pm for the second time in 48 hours because the situation is so critical.
In the capital, the picture is darker than ever: the number of new infections will nearly double on Thursday, while the balance sheet has risen to 250 on Wednesday. The Mega Fitness Gym outbreak has crossed the 400-case mark and a 40-year-old man, who was said to have attended the facility, has died after contracting the virus.
There are also big concerns in Chaudière-Appalaches, which has reported an additional 142 infections. The news will also be worse on Thursday.
In Quebec as in Levis, schools and non-essential businesses will remain closed after April 12, while the curfew will be maintained at 8 p.m., if Quebec chooses to extend its treatment for shock as all is believed. Gatineau, an Ontario neighbour, which is reshaping itself for four weeks, could also be affected by the extension of special emergency measures.
The situation developed rapidly. On Tuesday, the National Director of Public Health, Drs Horacio Arruda responded that the extension of the special emergency measures “is not what is intended”. He is still talking about a ‘temporary’ procedure lasting for ’10 days’.
considered ds Arruda specified that the regions involved – Quebec, Levis, Gatineau, the MRC in Ottawa and five MRCs in Chaudeer Appalachian – had, on April 12, a “98% chance of going into the red” and were no longer subject to emergency measures. However, a return to the orange zone was ruled out as before.
As of Wednesday afternoon, with a report of new cases due for publication the next day, the government confirmed serious consideration of extending special emergency measures in Quebec and Levis.
No formal decision has yet been made in the evening – discussions with public health generally continue into the morning. It will be announced at 5 pm. In essence, we have shown that a significant increase in the number of cases is keeping the containment rope tight in Quebec and Levis.
It has not been ruled out that other regions will be subject to stricter health restrictions. On Wednesday, the Montreal Regional Public Health Department said it expects an increase in new infections. Across Quebec, hospitalizations related to COVID-19 have suddenly jumped, an indicator the government is extremely sensitive to. Twenty-nine more people are in a hospital bed, for a total of 543.
In Quebec, the Méga Fitness Gym became the sad symbol of the third wave, as was the Kirouac bar of the second wave.
One regular at this establishment who contracted COVID-19 says there was a “perfect storm” that triggered the outbreak. “My wife and I, we went there with masks. Once, I told him, ‘Look around.’ The world doesn’t have a mask. It’s the only place I’ve seen him in a year. Remembers Eve*.”
According to the health authorities, the outbreak in this gym led to the registration of 419 positive cases. Of that number, 195 people, customers, or employees have contracted COVID-19 within the walls of an organization. The outbreak also generated another 36 cases in various places, responsible for another 224 cases.
Eve was thrilled to reopen Mega Fitness Gym. He is a father of two and has been going there almost every day since it reopened in early March. He soon noticed that barrier gestures were not widely applied.
It’s a perfect storm. There was the general client mentality as well as the lack of personnel on the ground who had the responsibility to enforce the rules.
Yves, a fictitious first name customer from Méga Fitness Gym who contracted COVID-19
His testimony corresponds to numerous photos posted on social networks, where we can see customers without masks. According to Yves, the posters on the walls reminded people to wear face coverings, but the rule was not really enforced.
There were signs, but they weren’t severe. Mega Gym isn’t like other big gyms: The coaches aren’t employees, they’re all self-employed, he says. There is no army roaming the land to ensure that the rules are respected. »
It was impossible to obtain the owner’s copy. Dan Marino hasn’t answered calls from Journalism. The man often made headlines when the district was in the red, threatening to challenge the government and open up his establishment.
CIUSSS de la Capitale-Nationale ordered the gym closed on March 31 after deficiencies were discovered. Authorities said agents were training less than two meters away and that personal protection was “inadequate for workers on site”.
“We said, ‘If we stay in our corner, we should be fine,'” Eve says.
He and his partner started experiencing symptoms a few days before the lockdown. They were tested on March 28. Both were carriers of the virus, as was their daughter. He almost certainly caught the virus in the gym. Eve says public health is convinced of this, too.
The guy doesn’t want Dan Marino. “I’m a big boy,” he said, “I could have gone home when I saw the shortcomings.” It is believed that the owner was negligent. “But I am sure that today, if asked, he would do things differently.”
Investigating the IUCPQ
A 40-year-old man also died Monday in Quebec after contracting COVID-19. According to some media outlets, he was going to attend Mega Fitness Gym in recent weeks. However, it cannot be confirmed whether he contracted the virus at the scene.
Etienne Desrochers Jean died of the disease, according to the testimony of members of his family. “It really is a tragedy. We will have new information soon. There are people out there who should answer our questions,” his sister Lucy wrote on Facebook.
according to Quebec MagazineThe man reportedly went to the University Institute of Cardiology and Pulmonary Diseases of Quebec (IUCPQ) on April 3 because he was experiencing breathing difficulties. He was reportedly taken back to his home, where he died two days later.
“We don’t have any comments on that. It’s a bit of a surprise to us. There will be an internal investigation,” IUCPQ spokeswoman Valerie Lifranso commented.
The official spokesman confirmed that the forensic medicine office will also conduct an investigation into the circumstances of his death.
* Yves is a fictitious name. The man preferred not to be named because he has a business and fears that he will be targeted on social media.