Canada coronavirus deaths jump by 35%, Ottawa to spend C$2 billion on key equipment

  • World
  • Wednesday, 01 Apr 2020

Workers wave at passing cars honking their horns in support for Pinecrest Nursing Home after several residents died and dozens of staff were sickened by coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Bobcaygeon, Ontario, Canada March 30, 2020. REUTERS/Carlos Osorio

OTTAWA (Reuters) - The Canadian death toll from the coronavirus outbreak jumped by 35% to 89 in less than a day, officials said on Tuesday, and Ottawa said it would spend C$2 billion (£1.14 billion) to help buy key medical supplies and equipment.

Chief public health officer Theresa Tam said that by 9 a.m. eastern time (1300 GMT) the total number of those diagnosed with the coronavirus had risen by 15% to 7,708.

The respective figures at 1200 ET on Monday were 66 deaths and 6,671 positive diagnoses.

Tam told a daily briefing she was particularly concerned that the virus was spreading to enclosed settings where vulnerable people live, such as seniors' residences, prisons and aboriginal communities.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau earlier said Ottawa would invest $2 billion to support testing and to purchase ventilators and protective personal equipment such as masks, face shields, gowns and hand sanitizer.

Procurement Minister Anita Anand told the briefing that Ottawa had already bought more than 157 million surgical masks.

(Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Dan Grebler)

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