PM Trudeau Says Canada Handled COVID-19 Outbreak Better Than The US

The Prime Minister’s statement comes after a survey found Canadians’ COVID-19 fears are rising again as the coronavirus outbreak grows rampant in the U.S

During his news conference in the nation’s capital, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made a rare public comment saying Canada has handled the coronavirus outbreak better than its allies, which included the United States. 

Despite Canada only having a tenth of the population of the United States, the country has reported 8,733 deaths and 106,368 confirmed cases of COVID-19 as of Wednesday afternoon.

Updating Canadians on the current situation of the COVID-19 pandemic, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that the situation was stabilizing despite several hotspots remaining in the country. 

“We were able to control the virus better than many of our allies, particularly including our neighbour,” said the Prime Minister at the news briefing today further adding that this will be key in Canada’s efforts to restart the economy. 

In contrast, the U.S reported over 3.05 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 with as many as 133,435 deaths due to complications related to COVID-19. 

Canada’s Deputy Chief Public Health Officer Howard Njoo commented on Canada’s current situation saying the outbreak was largely under control. 

However, the Deputy Chief Public Health Officer also stressed that measures such as contact tracing, quarantine, and physical distancing would still be essential, otherwise, there may be a potential spike or second wave of the virus outbreak. 

“If we relax too much or too soon, the epidemic will most likely rebound, with explosive growth as a distinct possibility,” said Dr. Howard Njoo. 

Canadian COVID-19 fears are rising again as the outbreaks worsen in the United States, says a poll

Since the start of the pandemic in March, Canada and the United States have agreed to close the Canada-U.S. borders effectively blocking all non-essential travel between the two countries.

With the ban set to expire on July 21, 2020, and the two countries are still discussing whether to extend the border closures, it appears a majority of Canadians agree on keeping the borders closed. 

In a survey conducted between July 3 and July 5 by Leger, a Canadian-owned market research and analytics company, for the Association for Canadian Studies, 58 percent of respondents said they were afraid of contracting COVID-19

The figure was reported to have increased by seven percentage points and currently sitting at 65 percent of respondents saying they are afraid of getting infected. 

According to the analytics by Leger, Canadians’ fear of contracting COVID-19 was at its lows when the United States reported 20,000 new cases every day. 

This changed drastically however as fears grew higher as the United States began hitting new records for daily new COVID-19 cases peaking at 57,000 cases per day. 

Additionally, Leger found that 86 percent of Canadians reject the idea of re-opening the border as the ban is set to expire July 21. 

Almost 71 percent of Canadians expressed that they “strongly disagreed” with reopening the border, which indicates a firmly held opinion. 

While the government from both Canada and the United States are yet to announce an extension to the border closures, it appears Canadians have grown anxious at the situation unfolding in the neighbouring country. 

According to Google Trends, the key terms “COVID” and “U.S.A” first peaked at the end of March in Canada, with web searches for these terms dropping by half the amount by June. 

However, since the first week of June, Google reported web searches relating to the pandemic in the United States have nearly doubled, whereas searches related to the pandemic in Canada remained steady.

It is starting to become clear that despite Canada’s improving COVID-19 situation, many Canadians are still cautiously monitoring the COVID-19 situation around the world as they adapt to a new normal. 

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