Canada posts one of its smallest daily increases in coronavirus deaths

A worker looks out after police officers placed butterfly stickers on windows at Orchard Villa Retirement Residence on Mother's Day, after several residents died of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Pickering, Ontario, Canada

The total number of people killed by the coronavirus in Canada rose by 2.2% to 4,728 on Sunday, one of the lowest daily increases since the outbreak started, official public health agency data showed.

“We have come a long way in a short time since the COVID-19 pandemic was declared and our efforts have undoubtedly prevented wider spread of the virus across the country,” chief public health officer Theresa Tam said in a statement.

The figure for those diagnosed with the coronavirus rose to 67,996. On Saturday there were 4,628 deaths and 66,780 positive diagnoses.

Separately, Ontario – the most populous of the 10 provinces – reported just 294 new cases on Sunday, the lowest day-on-day advance since March 31.

Several provinces are moving to gradually reopen businesses that were shut down to fight the outbreak, throwing millions out of work.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Saturday that if provinces acted too quickly, a second wave of the pandemic could send Canada “back into confinement this summer”.

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