COVID cases and news for Nova Scotia on Wednesday, Sep 29

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.



No COVID update on Truth and Reconciliation Day

On the first-ever National Day for Truth and Reconciliation tomorrow, the province is not putting out a disease report. That is the proper thing. There are other problems, and other futures, that deserve our full attention on Thursday.


Mandatory vaccinations coming

Today's provincial briefing included news of a vaccine mandate for health and school workers that will take effect in Nova Scotia on November 30, and the move to a modified Phase 5 reopening on Monday. Lyndsay Armstrong was in the room where it happened for The Coast, and filed this report about what is happening.


41 new cases, 224 active cases

Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Reopening status
Phase 4

New cases
41

New recoveries
21

New deaths
0

Active cases
224

Total cases in Nova Scotia during pandemic
6,638

Total COVID deaths
97

Nova Scotia is actively wrestling with the fourth wave. Today's 41 new cases are not the most announced in a day by the province over the last few weeks, but with only 21 people recovering from COVID since yesterday, the active caseload increases by 20 to reach 224 active cases. And 224 active cases is the highest level Nova Scotia's experienced in nearly four months, dating back to June 5, at the tail end of the third wave.

After a COVID death was announced on both Monday and Tuesday, we're relieved to say no deaths are being reported today. And C19 hospitalizations are down from 13 yesterday to 12 today. Unfortunately the number of those patients sick enough to require intensive care increased from one in yesterday's report to two today.

Testing is also up, as more Nova Scotians than usual wonder if they have caught the disease in its current period of surging activity. Local labs completed 5,720 tests yesterday, the most since June 17. "Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms is advised to self-isolate and book a COVID-19 test," is the province's current testing advice.

Vaccination clinics across the province delivered 2,910 jabs yesterday, an increase from the 2,577 vaccinations given a week ago. Out of the 2,910 shots, there were 1,605 people receiving their second dose, pushing Nova Scotia up to 74.6 percent fully vaccinated.

In its Wednesday disease report, the province says the 41 new cases are spread across Nova Scotia as so: "There are 32 cases in Central Zone, four cases in Northern Zone, three cases in Eastern Zone and two cases in Western Zone."

The province's data dashboard also reports information at the level of the community health networks, and that info shows just 40 cases today, not 41. ("Cumulative cases may change as data is updated in Panorama," the province says in every report, referring to the public health tracking system, by way of explaining such discrepancies in the data.)

We are reporting the 41 cases, while hereby noting our map and table of the health networks show the 40 cases from the data dashboard. The Halifax network has the bulk of the new cases, 16, while Dartmouth and Bedford/Sackville each have six cases. No other network has more than two new cases.

Thanks to revised demographic information that the province started reporting on Monday, we know that 11 of today's new cases were diagnosed in children in the 0-to-11-year-old age group. (Only people age 12 and up are eligible to be vaccinated according to Health Canada rules.) Today's report says there were three public schools across the province with COVID exposure notices yesterday; according to the school-exposure database they are Halifax West high school, Duc d'Anville elementary and École Mer et Monde.

Out of the 244 active cases, they are spread across 11 of Nova Scotia's 14 community networks, but only four networks have more than 10 active cases each. They are Halifax (106 active cases), Dartmouth (50), Bedford/Sackville (20) and Truro/Colchester (13).


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 yesterday's COVID-19 news roundup, for September 28, 2021.

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