Quebec COVID-19 hospitalizations rising as new variants gaining ground

New variants gain ground

Quebec's public health director is set to address the COVID-19 situation in the province as the number of people hospitalized with the disease appears to be rising.

Dr. Luc Boileau's news conference comes as COVID-19 hospitalizations rose by 34 in the previous 24 hours, after a 113-patient rise the day before.

There are now 1,260 people in hospital with COVID-19 in Quebec, including 35 in intensive care.

Health officials are also reporting four more deaths associated with the novel coronavirus.

Dr. Don Vinh of the McGill University Health Centre says Quebec is facing a “perfect storm” of factors that include the emergence of new variants, waning immunity from vaccination or previous infection, and the removal of public health restrictions.

He says the new Omicron subvariants BA.4 and BA.5 appear to be gaining ground and finding vulnerable people to infect, especially since the mutations seem to be better able to evade immunity compared with previous strains.

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