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N.B. Confirms 18 More COVID Deaths

By Brad Perry Jan 4, 2023 | 5:45 PM

New Brunswick health officials confirmed 18 more COVID-related deaths over the past two weeks.

That is according to the latest COVIDWATCH report, which covers the period between Dec. 18 and 31.

With the latest update, the total number of confirmed deaths since the start of the pandemic rises to 740.

“COVID-19 deaths remained stable,” said the weekly report, released on Wednesday.

Of the new deaths, one person was between the ages of 50 and 69 and 14 were aged 70 or older.

Public Health did not release details on the other three deaths as they occurred before Aug. 28 — the start of the current respiratory virus season.

“Deaths are subject to a lag in reporting,” said the report, noting it takes an average of two months from the date death and receiving the registration of death form.

Hospitalizations and ICU admissions

The virus sent 54 more people to the hospital over the past two weeks, including four to an intensive care unit.

Of those admitted, two were under the age of 20, five were between 20 and 59 years old, five were between 60 and 69 years old, and 42 were aged 70 or older.

“COVID-19 hospitalizations decreased in Week 51, which was followed by an increase in Week 52,” said the report.

As part of recent reporting changes, Public Health no longer includes information on how many people are currently in the hospital because of COVID-19.

The province’s two regional health authorities usually provide information on the number of active hospitalizations, but their next weekly report will not be released until Jan. 10.

Saint John region hotspot for new cases

A total of 1,549 positive cases were reported over the past two weeks, including 1,006 positive PCR tests and 543 rapid tests.

The Saint John health region, Zone 2, is the new hotspot with 482 new cases, accounting for 31 per cent of the total case count.

The Moncton health region (Zone 1) recorded 30 per cent of the new cases, followed by the Fredericton health region (Zone 3) with 19 per cent.

Amongst the most recent random samples sequenced, one per cent was the BA.2 variant, one per cent was BA.4 and 98 per cent were BA.5.

Vaccine doses

In terms of vaccinations, the Department of Health says 529 doses were given out over the past two weeks, including 53 first doses, 47 second doses, 79 first booster doses, and 350 second booster doses.

A total of 85.7 per cent of eligible New Brunswickers have received two doses, 54.4 per cent have received a booster shot, and 28.8 per cent have received their second booster.


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