Quebec announces 419 new COVID-19 cases as health restrictions ease

Quebec is reporting  419 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday and four more deaths as the province eases public health restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of the virus.

As of Friday, Quebec restaurant patios have reopened, the province’s overnight curfew is being lifted and small backyard gatherings with a maximum of eight people are being allowed.

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Quebec Premier Francois Legualt took to social media to thank Quebecers for their efforts and sacrifices over the last 15 months.

“It’s thanks to you that we got through this third wave that has been so devastating elsewhere,” he wrote in French in a Facebook post.

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He also credits the province’s vaccine rollout for turning the tide.

“It is the immense mobilization of our nation to vaccinate the most vulnerable in the first months of 2021 that has enabled us to save many lives,” he said.

Legault encouraged everyone to continue getting vaccinated with the first and second doses.

“It’s our passport to freedom,” he said.

To date 5,306,336 doses have been administered, including 101,094 on Thursday.

The number of people requiring hospitalization after contracting COVID-19 was down by nine on Friday for a total of 385.

Of those, 91 are in the intensive care unit, for a decrease of five in the last 24 hours.

The virus has claimed the lives of 11,118 Quebecers since the start of the pandemic. Authorities said of the four fatalities reported Friday, one occurred in the last 24 hours, one between May 21 and 26 and two before May 21.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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