Ottawa [Canada], January 29 (ANI/Xinhua): Canada confirmed 8,937 new COVID-19 cases Friday noon, elevating its national caseload to 3,007,264 with 33,489 deaths, CTV reported.
Ontario, the most populous province, reported 5,337 new cases and 68 deaths Friday noon while Quebec, another populous province, confirmed 3,600 new cases of COVID-19 and 48 additional deaths.
There are more than 10,800 people with COVID-19 being treated in the country's hospitals each day, with over 1,200 patients in the ICU and an average of 168 COVID-19-related deaths reported daily.
The number of people in hospitals with COVID-19 is still at a record high.
At a press conference in Ottawa On Friday, Canada's Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam said daily case counts, test positivity rates and wastewater surveillance trends show that Canada is now through the worst of the Omicron wave.
As of Jan. 26, the seven-day average case count was over 19,000, a 28 percent drop since the previous week. Caseloads are declining across all age groups.
The lab positivity rate remains high -- 19 percent of all tests are coming back positive -- but that figure has been gradually decreasing in recent weeks, which suggests the rate of community spread is slowing down.
While Omicron cases are subsiding, Tam warned of a new "sublineage" of that variant called BA.2 that has been detected in Canada. Over 100 cases of BA.2 have been identified so far.
Tam said it's too early to say what impact this subvariant could have on Canada's fight against COVID-19. She said BA.2 could prove to be more transmissible but "it doesn't seem to lead to any specific increase in hospitalizations or severe outcomes." (ANI/Xinhua)