Mylène Drouin: “Prudence paid off for Montreal”

Mylène Drouin: “Prudence paid off for Montreal”
Montreal public health director Dr. Mylène Drouin said that “prudence paid off” in the city’s fight against the third wave, but urges continued caution as the city prepares to reopen.

In a press conference this afternoon, Drouin provided an update on the state of the pandemic in the city. There were only 96 new COVID-19 cases in Montreal yesterday, out of 308 across Quebec, and while those numbers and the vaccine rollout are encouraging, there are still 216 active outbreaks in the city and there are a number of people in the 18–44 age group — the group that currently accounts for most new cases — who have not yet been vaccinated. (More walk-in vaccination options will be opened up, Drouin said, because the younger demographic appears to be more inclined to get their shots without an appointment.)

Drouin noted that while outbreaks have decreased in workplaces, healthcare and long-term care settings, schools and daycares, there has been an increase in community transmission. Out of the 16 community outbreaks in Montreal right now, 9 are rooted in park gatherings. The risk of spreading COVID-19 outside is lower, Drouin said, but people who are gathering outdoors should still be sticking to the usual public health and safety measures, and avoid sharing food, plates, utensils and drinks.

Drouin also shared a reminder that the immunity provided by the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine does not kick in until two to three weeks after the shot. She also urged anyone with symptoms to go get tested immediately, saying that that reflex will be especially important as Montreal begins to open restaurants, gyms and other public establishments, and allow outdoor and indoor gatherings.

“The more we open, the more we have contacts, the more we have to find the chain of transmission and cut them down.”—Dr. Mylène Drouin

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