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Nova Scotia is reporting 1,420 new lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19, 37 hospitalizations and seven deaths in the seven-day period ending June 20. The number of new positive PCR tests has decreased compared to the previous reporting period; however, hospital admissions have increased.

“It’s encouraging to see we have another week with a drop in COVID-19 activity,” said Dr. Shelley Deeks, Nova Scotia’s deputy chief medical officer of health. “We have learned a lot about this virus over the past two years. As the weather improves, I encourage people to gather outside whenever possible, continue to wash their hands, use cough and sneeze etiquette, and most importantly, if you are sick, stay home.

People aged 70 and over continue to be most at risk of serious consequences from COVID-19. Since the start of the Omicron waves on December 8, 2021, the median age of hospitalizations is 71 years old and the median age of those who have died is 81 years old. All COVID-19 deaths reported this week were in people aged 70 or older. .

Data shows that age is the biggest risk factor for serious illness and that vaccines continue to work. The risk of hospitalization is almost 11 times higher in people aged 70 and over and the risk of death about 115 times higher than in people under 50. In every age group for which the vaccine is available, unvaccinated people are at higher risk of severe disease than those who are vaccinated. Vaccine-related immunity declines more rapidly in people age 70 and older, so a second booster dose was recommended this spring. Most adults under the age of 70 are still well protected against serious illnesses by their two-dose primary vaccination plus a booster.

Nova Scotians who are not up to date on recommended vaccines are still encouraged to receive all doses for which they are eligible.

To date, 65.8% of Nova Scotians aged 18 and older have received at least one booster dose, and 74,159 people have received a second.

The Weekly Epidemiological Summary of COVID-19 is prepared for the Chief Medical Officer of Health and his team to inform public health management of the pandemic. It tracks weekly trends and focuses on monitoring severe consequences among key populations. The full report is available here: https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/alerts-notices/#epidemiologic-summaries

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