COVID cases and news for Nova Scotia on Wednesday, Sep 15

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

NOTE: This day is now over. Click for the latest on COVID-19 from The Coast. Or for an informative look back at Nova Scotia's evolving pandemic response, keep on reading.

6 new cases???

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Reopening status
Phase 4

New cases

New recoveries

New deaths

Active cases

Total cases in Nova Scotia during pandemic

Total COVID deaths

COVID is the worst. The day after Nova Scotia puts the brakes on reopening because of a surging fourth wave of cases, the disease turns around and gives us just six new infections. Not that we could have moved into Phase 5 this morning anyway, because the province is far short of the 75 percent fully vaccinated mark, over 11,500 people short. But still, the disease's mercurial nature is another reason to hate it.

The six new cases are in a 3-2-1-0 spread across the province: three in Central zone, two in Northern, one for Eastern and none in Western. All are connected to either travel or previous cases, says the provincial report for Wednesday, except for a single infection in Central. (It really is hard to believe this is the same pandemic that dumped 139 cases on Nova Scotia in the previous two days of reports.)

The Coast's map and table of disease activity in the 14 in the community health network show that four different community networks each have a single new case, while the Truro/Colchester network has two cases. More interesting is the information about active cases: Truro/Colchester has 70 active cases, the most in the province, followed by Halifax at 25 and Dartmouth with 19 active cases.

Thanks to 20 people recovering from the disease since yesterday, the caseload actually dropped today by 14, reaching 159 active cases. Currently four of those patients are in the hospital, none of them sick enough to require the intensive care unit.

Testing went way up yesterday, possibly (or probably) because of the news about surging cases and the fourth wave officially arriving. Local labs processed 4,010 tests on Tuesday, the most in about 10 weeks, dating back to the 4,021 tests announced on June 26. The rolling average for testing is about 2,800 tests per day; getting only six new cases despite Tuesday's above-average testing is an encouraging sign.

Vaccinations, however, are not so impressive. Clinics throughout Nova Scotia delivered 3,043 doses yesterday, and a little more than half—1,641 jabs—went to people getting their second dose. This pushed the population of fully vaxxed Nova Scotians from 72.70 percent yesterday to 72.87 today, slow growth that leaves the province well short of the 75 percent double-dosed target that premier Tim Houston says is required to enter Phase 5.

The following table shows how far off the target we are: 11,661 second-dose vaccinations, and that's assuming there are 9,000 Nova Scotian armed forces personnel who are fully vaccinated but don't show up in the provincial total. Think of it as top doc Robert Strang's uncounted army, ready to be deployed whenever NS needs a little help reaching a vaccination target.

The last time was in July, when the goal to enter reopening Phase 4 was to have 75 percent of the population vaxxed with at least one dose. Back then, Strang said they numbered around 8,000 people; this time around, he's reportedly talking about somewhere between 8,000 and 9,000 military people. Erring on the side of Strang, we're using the full 9,000 in our forecast.

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. 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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Click here for yesterday's COVID-19 news roundup, for September 14, 2021.

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