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N.B. COVID-19 roundup: No new cases, but pandemic not over, stresses medical officer –

New Brunswick has no new cases of COVID-19 for the second straight day, the chief medical officer of health announced Monday.

The province’s total number of infections stands at 118, Dr. Jennifer Russell told reporters during the daily update in Fredericton.

This is the sixth day in the last 10 that a new case of COVID-19 has not been reported, said Russell. In the past week, there have been just four new cases, she said.

But “make no mistake, this pandemic is not over,” said Russell.

There are 20 active cases.

Five patients remain in hospital, including two in intensive care.

To date, 98 people have recovered.

A total of 10,970 tests have been conducted.

Of the 118 cases confirmed cases, 66 are travel-related, 42 are close contacts of confirmed cases and 10 are the result of community transmission. There are no cases currently under investigation.

Only one new case was reported over the weekend

On Saturday, a person aged 30 to 39 in Zone 3, which is the Fredericton region, was diagnosed with COVID-19. It was traced to community transmission.

Here is a roundup of other developments.

Government thinks more about recovery as infection rate drops

As infection rates drop, Premier Blaine Higgs said in a news release, government is now shifting the focus to think about “what recovery will look like.”

It won’t look like a quick return to normal, he said.

“People will return to work and businesses will open, but this will not happen overnight.”

Russell said it is was encouraging to see the slow growth in the number of confirmed cases, but “we must not get ahead of ourselves and we must continue to do all that we can to slow the spread of COVID-19.” 

Ease with online teaching varies among staff

As students and teachers adjust to a new way of teaching and learning, Anglophone South school district superintendent Zoe Watson said teachers were given a lot of training to prepare them for online learning. 

“Some teachers are very comfortable with technology .. others need help and support,” said Watson.

Anglophone South School District superintendent Zoe Watson said it’s important to start slowly with online learning so students, families and teachers don’t get overwhelmed. (Jenny Kane/The Associated Press)

Teachers are using a variety of platforms to reach their students. Some are using class websites, others are using a platform called ClassDojo and others are using Microsoft Teams.

“They can post documents, articles, they can set up assignments,” said Watson.

Watson said some teachers have even been posting video lessons. 

She said it’s important to start slowly with online learning.

“We don’t want to overwhelm students or teachers or family,”

Assignments will take longer depending on the student and family, communication with teachers and principals is key.

Patience is also key according to Watson, as teachers are also working at home, often dealing with the same situations as most parents are.

Saint John teacher remembers Dr. Bonnie Henry as ‘good student’

Retired high school teacher Sandy Throne says she remembers teaching Dr. Bonnie Henry, British Columbia’s provincial health officer, when she attended Saint John High School from 1981 to 1983. 

British Columbia provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry is remembered as a good student by a teacher who taught her at Saint John High School. (Mike McArthur/CBC)

Henry has become a celebrity of sorts, with paintings, songs and even shoes being made in her honour by fans who admire the public health officer for her calm, compassionate and candid demeanour during the frequent news appearances she makes to keep the B.C. public apprised of the latest developments in the pandemic.

After Henry assumed the position of B.C.’s top doctor in February 2018, Thorne said, “I thought ‘I taught her.'”

Thorne went back into her old grade books to see what kind of student Henry was. In the course she taught, European history, the class average was a 78.

“She came first with a mark of 93,” said Thorne. “She obviously was a good student.”

Henry also left her mark on the student body, becoming captain of the field hockey team and being elected vice-president of the student council.

Thorne said she can’t help but feel proud of her former student. 

Thorne shared the final line of Henry’s graduation writeup, which suggests part of Henry’s future was known even then: “Good luck Dr. Bon.”

What to do if you have symptoms

People concerned they might have COVID-19 can take a self-assessment on the government website. Symptoms of coronavirus include fever, a new or worsening cough, and breathlessness, as well as sore throat, headache and runny nose. People with two of those symptoms are asked to:

  • Stay at home.

  • Immediately call Tele-Care 811 or their doctor

  • Describe symptoms and travel history.

  • Follow instructions carefully.

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