Public Health confirmed Friday that an individual between 80 and 89 in Zone 4 (Edmundston region) has died as a result of underlying complications, including COVID-19, bringing the total number of COVID-related deaths in the province to 17.

The person was a resident of Manoir Belle Vue, a nursing home in Edmundston.

“I would like to express my sincere condolences to this person’s loved ones,” said Health Minister Dorothy Shephard.

“On behalf of all New Brunswickers, I want to offer my sincere sympathy to the loved ones of the deceased,” said Dr. Jennifer Russell, chief medical officer of health. “Know that we all grieve this heartbreaking loss with you.”

16 new cases

Public Health reported 16 new cases of COVID-19 Friday.

The four cases in Zone 1 (Moncton region) are as follows:

  • an individual 19 and under;
  • an individual 20-29; and
  • two people 40-49.

The two cases in Zone 3 (Fredericton region) are as follows:

  • an individual 20-29; and
  • an individual 50-59.

The nine cases in Zone 4 (Edmundston region) are as follows:

  • an individual 30-39;
  • two people 40-49;
  • two people 60-69;
  • two people 70-79;
  • an individual 80-89; and
  • an individual 90 and over.

The one case in Zone 6 (Bathurst region) is as follows:

  • an individual 50-59.

All cases are self-isolating and under investigation.

The number of confirmed cases in New Brunswick is 1,218. Since Thursday, 15 people have recovered for a total of 887 recoveries. There have been 17 deaths, and the number of active cases is 313. Four patients are hospitalized with two in intensive care. Yesterday, 2,079 tests were conducted for a total of 196,035.

Reminder of Red level and lockdown rules

Zone 1 (Moncton region) is at the Red level and Zone 4 (Edmundston region) remains in lockdown.

All other zones will remain in the Orange level under the province’s mandatory order.

Public Health recommended that Zone 5 (Campbellton region), Zone 6 (Bathurst region) and Zone 7 (Miramichi region) remain at the Orange level due to new COVID-19 variants, such as the ones identified in the United Kingdom and South Africa, possibly entering New Brunswick.

“Early data suggests that these new variants may be more contagious, so it is important that we take the necessary precautions now to reduce the transmission of the virus and any of its variants in our communities,” said Russell.

Changes to Orange leveleffective at midnight

Recognizing that zones may be in Orange level for several more weeks, Public Health also recommended the expansion of the household bubble under the Orange level to include 10 contacts (a steady 10) from outside the household. This is to allow people to see at least some family members and close friends. This change goes into effect at midnight. These groups may socialize together, including going to restaurants. Further details about the updated Orange level are available online.

“I know changes to the rules can be frustrating and difficult to keep up with,” said Shephard. “I am asking everyone to continue to be adaptable, as we strive to stay one step ahead of COVID-19.”

Shephard said cabinet is working with Public Health to reassess whether changes also need to be made to the Yellow level to meet the changing reality of the pandemic.

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