Hospitalizations have also been rising in recent days, Christian Dubé said.
Quebec's new COVID-19 cases have hit their highest point in over half a year, and hospitalizations are rising, Health Minister Christian Dubé announced at a press conference on December 1, where he urged prudence as the holidays approach.
"Don't be surprised when we publish our figures at 11 o'clock, 1,200 cases," Dubé said. The health minister stressed that "we have to be careful."
"Not just because of the new variant, but the health measures, we have to follow them at this time. [...] I want us to get to Christmas as low as possible in our cases. Hospitalizations have been going up 10 cases a day for the last three days, which is what you're going to see this morning at 11. So let's be careful for the next few weeks."
According to the official provincial data released this morning, the exact number of new cases reported in the last 24 hours is 1,196. Quebec's new case count hasn't been this high since back in late April – April 24, to be exact — when 1,198 cases were reported.
The 1,000-case threshold was recently crossed again on November 24, the first time since early May. Since then, including today's announcement, Quebec has reported more than 1,000 cases three more times.
"I tell you, 1,200 cases today, I don't like it," Dubé said. "I don't like it because there's a significant increase."
Still, the jump isn't entirely surprising — experts say they expect case numbers to rise in the colder months.
Last year on December 1, Quebec declared 1,526 new cases detected in 24 hours.
The first case of the Omicron variant was detected in Quebec on Monday, November 28, as confirmed by Dubé in a press conference. Canada's first two confirmed cases of this new variant were discovered in Ottawa the day prior.
This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.