Statement from the Chief Public Health Officer of Canada on August 23, 2020


August 23, 2020 - Ottawa, ON - Public Health Agency of Canada

In lieu of an in-person update to the media, Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, issued the following statement today:

“There have been 124,629 cases of COVID-19 in Canada, including 9,071 deaths. 89% of people have now recovered. Labs across Canada have tested 5,076,734 people for COVID-19 to date. Over the past week, an average of over 48,700 people were tested daily, with 0.8% testing positive. Over the last several weeks, national daily case counts have ranged from 350 to 500 cases, with an average 380 cases being reported daily during the most recent 7 days.

Together, we have worked hard to drive COVID-19 transmission rates down in Canada and our epidemiological data indicate that we are keeping spread under manageable control. As we continue to reopen our economic and social spaces, we can expect increases in cases and clusters as we’ve seen in recent weeks in jurisdictions across the country but we are continually improving our capacity to manage COVID-19 based on our own experience and the experience of other countries. Together, we can limit the size and impact of these resurgences.  

At the same time, limiting the impact of COVID-19 means taking care of our broader health and wellbeing. This includes keeping up with routine medical appointments for essential preventative health services like vaccinations, cancer screening tests, and dental care, as well as the ongoing management of chronic diseases. Delaying essential medical visits can lead to bigger health problems down the road. Take care of yourself and encourage your loved ones to do the same – now is the perfect time to catch up on any appointments you may have missed during the initial epidemic wave.  

Health care providers and the colleges and professional bodies that regulate and inform their practices have worked hard to increase the availability and quality of virtual care in Canada over the last several months and they have put measures and guidance in place to protect you and your loved ones during in-person medical visits. Contact your health care provider to find out how they have adapted their practices so that you can access care safely.

Whenever you go out, there are precautions you can take to reduce the risk of getting infected and spreading the virus to others. Understanding the risks and following local public health guidance will help you make informed decisions to keep yourself, your loved ones and communities safer. You can find additional information and guidance to increase your COVID-19 know how here.”


Media Relations
Public Health Agency of Canada

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