Remarks from the Chief Public Health Officer on COVID-19, September 18, 2020


There have been 140,867 cases of COVID-19 in Canada, including 9,200 deaths. 87% of people have now recovered. Labs across Canada tested an average of 47,111 people daily over the past week with 1.4% testing positive. Yesterday a total of 1,120 cases were reported across Canada; however only 872 of these cases were newly identified yesterday. Due to a reporting backlog in Quebec, 248 of the cases are from cases identified earlier in the week. With the inclusion of these backlogged cases, an average of 849 new cases have been reported daily during the most recent seven days.

The ongoing increase in the national daily case count is an indicator of accelerated epidemic growth. This situation increases the likelihood that we could lose the ability to keep COVID-19 cases at manageable levels. Now is the time for Canadians to redouble their efforts with personal precautions that will slow the spread of the virus. I urge everyone to consistently follow proven effective measures for controlling the spread of COVID-19, including maintaining physical distancing, handwashing and wearing non-medical masks where appropriate. As always, the most important measure is to stay home and away from others if you are experiencing any symptoms, even if mild.

By following these measures, you can keep yourself and your loved ones safer, while helping to protect people in our communities who are at high risk of severe illness due to COVID-19. Your actions can have a direct effect in reducing transmission in your community, which will help businesses, schools and public facilities stay open.

I also want to acknowledge how the last few weeks have been a time of change for many Canadians. School-aged children and their caregivers have adjusted to new routines, new teachers and new ways of doing things.  And for many, it has not been easy.

Parents, caregivers and educators are watching the increase in case numbers with concern. We can support them as well as children and students, by following the advice of local public health authorities to help keep COVID-19 out of schools.

We’ve come too far and lost too much to give up now – let's reconfirm our commitment to work together and redouble our efforts to keep COVID-19 at manageable levels. 

Thank you.

Search for related information by keyword: Health and Safety | Public Health Agency of Canada | Canada | Coronavirus (COVID-19) | media | speeches

Page details

Date modified: