Montreal public health has estimated that 8-10% of new COVID-19 cases in Montreal stem from the B.1.1.7 COVID-19 virus variant, which was identified in the U.K.\nIn a press conference on February 24, Public Health Director Dr. Mylène Drouin confirmed that the city is managing 22 COVID-19 outbreaks linked to the B.1.1.7 virus variant. \nEditor's Choice: A Petition With Over 80K Signatures Wants Quebec Nurses Off-The-Hook For 2021 License Fees\n\nDr. Drouin said most new B.1.1.7 cases are mainly in schools and daycare centres in the city.\nShe said the city's main goal, for the time being, is to delay the entry of the U.K. variant strain in Montreal.\nDr. Drouin placed an emphasis on the need to vaccinate Montreal's elderly population, who will begin receiving doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in Quebec as of next week.\n"We know that the main factor is still age for hospitalizations and deaths," Drouin said.\n"This acceleration of the vaccination of our most vulnerable population is going to help us protect them from a severe form of the disease."\n\nDr. Drouin said the reproductive rate of the coronavirus in Montreal remains under one, indicating that Montrealers are following health protocols.\n"We've seen it in European countries where [variants are present]... If the measures are well-applied by the population, it is possible to reduce the reproductive rate of this variant."