COVID cases and news for Nova Scotia on Tuesday, Oct 12

Information including charts, new infections and our daily map of community COVID-19.

99 new cases for the long weekend

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Reopening status
Phase 5, modified

New cases

New recoveries

New deaths

Active cases

Total cases in Nova Scotia during pandemic

Total COVID deaths

Nova Scotia is reporting 99 new cases on Tuesday, the total for the four-day long weekend. This averages to basically 25 new cases per day, in line with last week's days with the fewest new infections, and no reason at all to panic (see "Don't panic" below). In more good news, the province is reporting 130 recoveries over the same period, so the active caseload drops to 197 active cases.

"There are 86 cases in Central Zone, six cases in Western Zone, four cases in Northern Zone and three cases in Eastern Zone," says the province in the report, warning that, like last week, there is community spread of the disease happening in Central zone ("primarily among people aged 20 to 40 who are unvaccinated and participating in social activities").

Our map and table, below, use data about the community health networks from the provincial COVID dashboard to give a zoomed-in perspective on COVID activity, and they show the Halifax network (one of the five networks that make up Central zone) has most of today's reported cases with 52 new cases. The Dartmouth network has second-most at 20 new cases, followed by Bedford/Sackville at 11. Outside Central zone, the South Shore is the community network with the most new cases, at four.

We should mention that today is one of those (pretty common) days where the numbers in the written report—99 new cases—don't match the numbers from the data dashboard, which the table below shows at 93 new cases. Any time we ask what's going on, the province tells us that information sometime changes in the public health tracking system, period. ("Cumulative cases may change as data is updated in Panorama," is the language every report uses.) That's all the explanation we get, so that's all the explanation we can offer you for the discrepancy of six cases.

Testing and vaccinations followed typical weekend patterns of declining numbers. Yesterday on the Thanksgiving holiday Monday, local labs processed just 2,334 tests, the lowest daily amount in more than a month, since there were 2,229 tests reported Wednesday, September 8.

Vaccinations hit a similar low. Clinics in Nova Scotia injected 3,124 people over the four-day weekend, or an average of 781 shots per day—the fewest since the Labour Day long weekend in early September. Out of that total, there were 1,897 people who got their second dose, pushing the province to 76.12 percent fully vaccinated (graph below).

The number of COVID patients in hospital is unchanged from Friday's report, at 15 patients in hospitals in Nova Scotia. But where four of those patients were in intensive care on Friday, now there are only two people in the ICU, a very positive change.

The Monday report says eight schools received notice of C19 exposure over the weekend, offering a link to a database for more information. But if you'd like that information more quickly, we can report that the schools are École Beaubassin, Halifax West High, Chebucto Heights Elementary, Dartmouth South Academy, Ian Forsyth Elementary, Seaside Elementary, Joseph Howe Elementary and École Mer et Monde.

In more Coast analysis of the NS data dashboard, we know that 26 of the new cases being reported today are in the youngest age group of Nova Scotians. This age group, children from 0-11 years old, is also the only group ineligible for any COVID vaccines according to Health Canada rules.

Don’t panic

Whenever the province publishes the latest COVID numbers—the report tends to come out in the early afternoon—remember this report covers four days. That's new cases diagnosed Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Thanksgiving holiday Monday, because the last report came out Friday, for cases diagnosed Thursday. And even a relatively low number of daily cases looks big when we're talking four days of infections.

For example, there were 25 new cases announced last Wednesday. If the holiday weekend averaged 25 cases per day, today's report will announce 100 new cases, which seems like a huge amount. But it's only 25 cases per day on average, not panic-worthy. Tuesday, Nova Scotia reported 40 new COVID cases—the most in a day last week, but down from 41 reported the Wednesday before—and if that's the weekend average, today will be at 160 new cases. Another huge number, but within Nova Scotia's recent normal.

So if today features any number below 100, our infections are actually down from last week. Between 100 and 160 cases is the range of last week's normal.

Tuesday, September 14 was Nova Scotia's one-day high for the fourth wave, at 66 new cases. If the Thanksgiving weekend average 66 cases per day, today's total will be 264 new cases. So a number today between 160 and 264 new cases is precedented for the fourth wave, but definitely high, with infections up from last week. And 265 or more cases today? Panic is never good, but some worry would be understandable.

Map of cases in community health networks

This infographic was created by The Coast using daily case data from Nova Scotia's official COVID-19 dashboard. Our goal is for this to be the best NS COVID map around, clearer and more informative than the province or any other media organization provides. To get there we do an analysis of the data to find each day's new and resolved case numbers in the 14 community health networks, information the province does not provide. For a different but still highly accessible approach to the latest COVID statistics, check out our case table. Note: On July 23, 2021, Nova Scotia announced that it will no longer update case numbers on weekends.

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Case table of the health networks

The Coast uses data logged from Nova Scotia's official COVID-19 dashboard in order to provide this tabulated breakdown. The province reports the number of active cases in each of Nova Scotia's 14 community health networks, but we do the math to be able to report the new and resolved case numbers. We also map the data to provide a different view of the case information. Note: Effective July 23, 2021, the province no longer updates case numbers on weekends.

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New and active cases visualized

Nova Scotia's third wave of COVID grew in April, 2021, peaked in May (227 new cases in one day was the maximum) and subsided in June. On July 17, the province reached five active cases—its lowest level in more than eight months—and an election was called. So when it came time to reset The Coast's chart comparing daily new cases with that day’s active caseload, in order to better reflect disease levels after the third wave, we started from July 17. Two months later, on September 14, the province formally announced the arrival of the fourth wave of COVID. The dark line tracks the rise and fall of new infections reported by the province; the green area is the province's caseload. Click or hover over any point on the graph and the detail for that moment will pop up. To focus on just new or active cases, click the legend at the top left of the graph to hide or reveal that data set. Note: As of July 23, 2021, the province stopped updating case numbers on weekends. And you can click here for the version of this graph that includes the third wave and its May 10 crest of 1,655 active cases.

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Vaccination in the population

How many Nova Scotians already have one dose of vaccine? How many are fully vaccinated with two doses? And how close are we to the herd immunity goal of 75 percent of the province fully vaxxed? These questions are answered in our chart of the vaccination rate in Nova Scotia since the province started reporting these numbers in January 2021, breaking out people who've had a single dose separate from those who've had the full complement of two doses. (Here's more information about the 75 percent target and what it will take to get there.) Note: The province doesn't update vaccination numbers on weekends.

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Canadian cases in 2021

There was a point in July 2021, when the delta variant was causing an increase in COVID infections around the world, that Canada seemed safe from the fourth wave. By August, however, that point had passed, and case numbers around the country started to rise again. This graph charts the number of new infections every day in each province and territory, using the 7-day moving average to mitigate single-day anomalies (including a lack of weekend reporting in several jurisdictions including British Columbia and Nova Scotia). To focus on individual places, click the place names at the top of the chart to turn that data on or off.

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Breakthrough infections in Nova Scotia

On Fridays, the province's daily COVID report includes statistics about COVID breakthroughs—infections, hospitalizations and deaths among people who are fully or partially vaccinated. The province reports its numbers as a cumulative total: all the breakthrough cases dating from March 15, 2021 to the latest update. The Coast does an analysis to break the information about new cases down by each weekly reporting period, in order to offer our readers the following unique view of the same information, so you can better understand the fluctuations in breakthrough infections as they happen. Note: Our bar chart only dates back to June because the province didn't start this reporting until summer 2021.

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Click here for the previous COVID-19 news roundup, for Friday, October 8, 2021.

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