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175 new cases on May 5, day 8 of the NS lockdown 

Your correspondent’s COVID-19 vaccination is in the province’s stats on Wednesday.

On hump day in Nova Scotia, COVID-19 infections reach a new peak: 175 new daily cases push the caseload to 1,203 active cases, both record highs.

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

New cases
175

New recoveries
32

Active cases
1,203

Days in a row with cases
37

Total cases in Nova Scotia during pandemic
3,182

Halifax’s lockdown
13 days

Nova Scotia’s lockdown
8 days

"There are 149 cases in Central Zone, 13 in Eastern Zone, nine in Western Zone and four in Northern Zone," says the province's regular daily update. Those nine fresh cases in the Western zone represent the most the area's had in one day since April 2020, over a year ago. But happily they apparently do not signal community transmission of COVID. "There is community spread in Central Zone," says the province. "The Eastern, Northern and Western Zones continue to be closely monitored for community spread."

According to our interactive map (above) and table (below) that go beyond the four zones to chart cases at the level of the 14 community health networks, 11 networks have new cases today. Yesterday only nine networks had new cases. (The Coast analyses the community health networks using data provided on the province's COVID dashboard.)

You may notice in the table that more than 150 cases in the Central zone are "Unassigned" to a health network, which means a patient's postal code hasn't yet been entered into the Panorama public health tracking system. Both this relatively large number of unassigned cases and the record high number of new cases reported today can be blamed, at least partially, on last week's backlog of 45,000 COVID tests. The province is reporting that the lab is now caught up on testing—it processed 11,506 tests yesterday, down from almost 20,000 the day before—but there remains a backlog of data to enter into Panorama.

“Case numbers continue to be very high and that’s not unexpected,” top public health doc Robert Strang says in the report. “As the lab worked through its backlog, positive cases were added into our data system and the data entry is still a bit behind. That delay is reflected in the high numbers we’re still seeing. The team is working hard and I expect data entry will catch up quickly. We should not take any comfort from this—even without a lag our numbers would still be too high. Nova Scotians need to stay the course and follow restrictions.”

With the province starting its second week of those lockdown restrictions, there are now 40 people in hospital with COVID, nine of them in the ICU. That's up from the 37 hospitalizations reported yesterday, and eight people in intensive care. Clinics around the province vaccinated 9,557 people yesterday, including Coast publisher Christine Oreskovich (first dose, AstraZeneca, left arm) and me (ditto).

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