COVID cases and news for Nova Scotia on Wednesday, May 19

Updates including briefings, infections and our daily map of community COVID-19.

NOTE: This day is now over. Click for the latest on COVID-19 from The Coast. Or for an informative look back at Nova Scotia's evolving pandemic response, keep on reading.

5,000 cases?!

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

New cases
83

New recoveries
164

New deaths
2

Active cases
1,262

Days in a row with cases
51

Total cases in Nova Scotia during pandemic
5,000

Total COVID deaths
74

Halifax’s lockdown
22 days

Nova Scotia’s lockdown
27 days

Nova Scotia’s lockdown extended today to last at least
21 more days

Today the province reported 83 new cases. It's a relatively low number, given recent days of 100+ cases. But adding those most-recent 83 cases to all the other cases that Nova Scotia has diagnosed, on all the other days since the disease officially arrived more than a year ago, today we reached the milestone total of having 5,000 cases of COVID-19 during the pandemic.

Like, reached 5,000 cases exactly. An awfully clean number for a disease that plays so rough. We are going to let this number sink in today, and consider what 5,000 cases means to Nova Scotia tomorrow.


Deaths, infections and long-term care cases

Most of the numbers in today's provincial COVID update are disastrous, so we'd better start some bright spots: 164 infected people recovered since yesterday, well above the 83 new cases today, driving the caseload down for the third day in a row. Now there are 1,262 active cases in Nova Scotia. The last time the caseload was under 1,300 was two weeks ago, on Wednesday, May 5.

And 83 new cases is also a recent low, the fewest daily infections since the province reported 67 new cases on April 30, 19 days ago. The province says 59 of the Wednesday cases are in the Central health zone, three are in Western zone, two are Northern and Eastern has 19.

Eastern hasn't had so many new cases in a single day in more than a year. According to our map and table charting cases at the community health network level, all those cases are in the Sydney/Glace Bay network. And now that we've broken the seal on the disastrous numbers…

The province is reporting two new deaths. "A man in his 60s has died in Eastern Zone and a woman in her 60s has died in Central Zone," says the update. They are the 73rd and 74th Nova Scotians to die as a result of COVID.

The outbreak at the Halifax Infirmary continues to infect patients who were in the hospital for non-COVID reasons. Today one more patient is announced as positive, bringing the total to 13 patients who've caught the disease at the hospital. But in another Wednesday bright spot, the number of COVID patients in hospital is down from 103 yesterday to 101 today (with 25 of those in intensive care yesterday, compared to 20 in ICU today).

Four of today's 83 new cases are connected to long-term care sites. "Two of the cases in the Eastern Zone involve a resident and outside agency staff member at Harbourstone Enhanced Care, a long-term care facility in Sydney," says the province. "A third case in the Eastern Zone involves a staff member of My Cape Breton Home for Seniors in North Sydney. Staff and residents in the impacted units of both facilities are being tested and residents are being cared for in their rooms. Most residents of both facilities have received both doses of COVID-19 vaccine."

The fourth case in long-term care is a staffer at The Ivy Meadows home in Beaver Bank. "This is the second case involving a staff member at this facility," says today's provincial update. However, according to previous provincial updates this new case would be the third Ivy Meadows staffer, after one reported April 23, and a second reported May 15.

Finally, in testing and vaccination stats reported today by the province, the numbers go from meh to worse. The NS lab completed 7,324 tests yesterday, almost reaching the current daily rolling average of 7,570. And yesterday vax clinics across the province gave out just 6,481 jabs, a glaringly low number compared to last Tuesday, May 11, when there were 12,780 injections (as reported Wednesday, May 12), almost double yesterday's total.


COVID in the community health networks

Our table uses data logged from Nova Scotia's official COVID-19 dashboard in order to provide this breakdown. The province reports the number of active cases in each of the 14 community health networks, but The Coast does the math to be able to report the new and resolved case numbers. We also map the data to provide a different view of the case information.


More weeks of lockdown

“I’m sorry to say that we are going to be extending the shutdown in the province another couple of weeks,” premier Iain Rankin announced at today's COVID-19 briefing. Click for our full story on this not totally suprising, still totally unwanted, news.


Our map of COVID by community health networks

This map was created by The Coast using daily case data from Nova Scotia's official COVID-19 dashboard. Our goal is for this to be the best NS COVID map around, clearer and more informative than the province or any other media organization provides. To get there we do an analysis of the data to find the new and resolved case numbers in the 14 community health networks, information the province does not provide. For a different but still highly accessible approach to the latest COVID statistics, check out our case table.

Click here for yesterday's COVID-19 news roundup, for May 18, 2021.

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