The provincial Ministry of Health and Social Services has announced another probable case of COVID-19 in Quebec. If confirmed, it would be the third case of the disease in the province. The second case was confirmed just hours earlier.

The new presumptive case involves a woman who had recently travelled to France. "Upon her return," says the Ministry, "she learned that she had been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19.

"She called Info-Santé 811 and, given her history of exposure, followed the recommended isolation instructions. She then went to a hospital in the Montérégie region, where a sample was taken. When she was taken into care, all precautionary measures were put in place."

Officials are currently conducting "a search for close contacts of the infected person [...] in order to apply the necessary protective measures in the community. Appropriate recommendations will be given to the persons concerned."

Despite the rapid succession of announcements concerning the virus, the Ministry makes clear in its statement confirming the second case that "the overall risk of being infected with the coronavirus remains low" and "that recognized hygiene measures, such as washing your hands and coughing into the crease of your elbow, are the best way to prevent infection and protect those around you."

"The coronavirus is increasingly present throughout the world and, in these circumstances, it is not surprising to see cases of COVID-19 occurring in Quebec," says Yves Jalbert, Deputy Director General for Public Health Protection.

"Since public health is a collective responsibility, I would like to salute the exemplary collaboration of the infected person, who has implemented all the recommendations regarding COVID-19. The staff at Info-Santé 811 and the institution in question were also very vigilant.

"This shows that the Quebec health and social services network is ready to deal with this type of situation."

Other public entities are also implementing precautions.

The STM moved up a new weekly cleaning schedule for trains and stations as transit companies across Canada did the same.

"As of March 5, 2020, 45 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in Canada," says the federal government website.

In addition to the two confirmed cases in Quebec, there are 22 in Ontario and 21 in B.C.

The government also maintains a list of recommended precautions for Canadians.

Stay tuned for updates.

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