The last:

COVID-19 cases continued to rise in Quebec on Tuesday, as health officials reported 12,833 new cases – a single-day high – and 15 more deaths.

Due to increasing pressure on the province’s healthcare system, Health Minister Christian Dubé announced on Tuesday that healthcare workers, under certain circumstances, will be allowed to continue working even if they receive a COVID result. -19 positive.

“Omicron’s contagion is so exponential that a huge number of staff must be removed, and this poses a risk to the network’s ability to treat Quebecers,” he said in a briefing. “We have made the decision that under certain conditions, positive staff will be able to continue working according to a priority list and risk management.”

Dubé said he would provide more information on these conditions in the coming days, but the decision was made with input from the union and the health ministry.

Public health director Dr Horacio Arruda added some details, saying if a worker is clearly not doing well, they won’t be forced to work.

“But the [are] people who really have symptoms, very soft, who can work again and feel good. “

WATCH | Dr. Arruda specifies which infected healthcare workers can continue to work in Quebec:

Some COVID-positive healthcare workers in Quebec may continue to work

Quebec’s director of public health, Dr. Horacio Arruda, describes who could continue to work in the health system even if they are positive for COVID-19, and under what circumstances. 1:44

Meanwhile, health officials in Ontario On Tuesday, 8,825 new cases and seven more deaths were reported. Health Minister Christine Elliott said in a tweet that there were 491 people hospitalized with COVID-19.

The province is temporarily suspending the entry of general visitors to long-term care homes starting Thursday, with two designated caregivers per resident exempt from the new rule.

Rod Phillips, Ontario’s Minister of Long-Term Care, said on Tuesday there were 41 nursing homes with outbreaks in the province, up from 37 the day before.

While 93 residents and 161 staff have tested positive for COVID-19, none are hospitalized, he said.

About 84 percent of eligible residents and 43 percent of long-term care workers had received booster doses of the COVID-19 vaccine last week, he said.

Dr Kieran Moore, the province’s chief medical officer of health, was due to provide an update on the Ontario situation on Tuesday, but provincial officials later said the briefing was postponed.

-From CBC News and The Canadian Press, last updated 2:45 p.m. ET

What is happening in Canada

WATCH | Director of the Ontario Science Table, on the need to reduce contact with Omicron:

Stricter COVID-19 Measures Needed In Ontario To Reduce Spread Of Omicron, Expert Says

Epidemiologist Dr Peter Jüni hopes the Ontario government will introduce more stringent COVID-19 restrictions to combat the spread of the Omicron variant. “The situation we find ourselves in is difficult,” he says. 6:52

For more details on the situation in your province and territory – including recent hospitalizations and intensive care capacity, as well as local testing issues – click on the local coverage below.

In Atlantic Canada, Nova Scotia Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr Robert Strang is expected to provide an update on Tuesday on the planned return to school. Strang is scheduled to appear with the provincial education minister at 2 p.m. local time. The scheduled briefing comes as the province reported 561 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday.

Newfoundland and Labrador Tuesday reported a total of 194 new cases of COVID-19 – a single-day high for the province – with no reported hospitalization.

Prince Edward Island reported a record 118 new cases on Tuesday, while New Brunswick health officials reported 306.

In the North, 11 new cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Nunavut Tuesday. Health officials in the Northwest Territories and yukonese had not yet provided updated information for the day.

In the Prairies, Manitoba health officials on Tuesday reported 825 new cases of COVID-19 and seven additional deaths. The update came as the province announced it was further increasing restrictions, including capacity limits for indoor and outdoor public gatherings.

There have been no updated figures published in Saskatchewan Where Alberta.

In British Columbia, health officials on Monday reported 6,288 new cases of COVID-19 over three days. Updated information on deaths and hospitalizations is expected later this week.

-From CBC News and The Canadian Press, last updated at 1 p.m. ET

What is happening in the world

Quebec Premier François Legault, center, Quebec Director of Public Health Horacio Arruda, left, and Health Minister Christian Dubé attend a press conference in Montreal last week. Authorities announced Tuesday that healthcare workers in Quebec, under certain circumstances, will be allowed to work even if they test positive for COVID-19. (Graham Hughes / The Canadian Press)

As of early Tuesday afternoon, around 281.6 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported worldwide, according to a tracking site run by Johns Hopkins University. The death toll worldwide stood at more than 5.4 million.

In Europe, demand for free COVID-19 test kits provided by the Madrid regional government far exceeded supply on Tuesday, with long queues outside pharmacies in what has become a common scene since the Omicron variant went live. started to increase the infection. It was a similar story in Italy, where long queues developed at some drive-thru testing centers while many chemists said they were inundated with requests for tests as infections soared.

Germany’s health minister said his government was purchasing one million packets of Pfizer’s Paxlovid pill for patients newly infected with COVID-19. Karl Lauterbach said the treatment is “extremely promising” because it can prevent serious illness if started early. He said he initiated the emergency clearance process for Paxlovid in Germany with the country’s medical regulator so that it could be used upon delivery.

In Africa, Health officials in South Africa reported 3,782 new cases of COVID-19 and 15 more deaths on Monday.

In the Asia Pacific region, India has granted emergency use authorization for two vaccines and one COVID-19 pill, the health minister tweeted, as authorities warn of the spread of the Omicron variant across the country.

The first is Covovax, the Serum Institute of India’s version of the Novavax vaccine, a two-dose vaccine made with lab-grown copies of the spike protein that covers the coronavirus. The second is Corbevax, made by the Indian company Biological-E, which the Minister of Health says is the first locally developed protein-based vaccine against COVID-19.

It has also granted emergency use authorization for the antiviral drug molnupiravir, which will be manufactured by 13 companies in India and will be used in emergency situations to treat high-risk COVID-19 patients.

People wearing face masks to curb the spread of the COVID-19 queue for a COVID-19 test at La Paz hospital in Madrid on Tuesday. Spain is grappling with the highest number of coronavirus infections on record, with some regions considering further restricting social life before the end of the year. (Manu Fernandez / The Associated Press)

Even though daily cases in India have remained low for months after the country saw a devastating increase earlier this year, concerns about Omicron have increased in recent weeks, prompting various states to apply new restrictions. In the capital, New Delhi, a series of new restrictions were announced on Tuesday, including a nighttime curfew, the closure of cinemas and gymnasiums and a ban on large gatherings or public events. India has so far confirmed more than 650 cases of Omicron.

Bangladesh, meanwhile, began administering coronavirus vaccine boosters as the South Asian country tried to fend off the highly contagious variant of Omicron.

In the Middle East, the multibillion-dollar world fair in Dubai has warned that some on-site sites could close as coronavirus cases increase rapidly in the United Arab Emirates. Dubai Expo 2020 said virus outbreaks among workers could force parts of the fair to “temporarily close for deep cleaning and disinfection.” He didn’t elaborate.

The number of daily cases of the virus in the United Arab Emirates has skyrocketed by a multiple of 35 in the past three weeks just after the arrival of the Omicron variant. The vague statement from the Dubai government-run media office on Monday highlights the daunting challenges of hosting one of the world’s first major in-person events amid a still raging pandemic.

In the Americas, U.S. government figures show that the omicron variant continues to account for a growing proportion of new coronavirus infections in the country.

Omicron accounted for 59% of new cases in the United States for the week ending December 25, according to updated data from the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This is up from 23% the previous week.

US President Joe Biden on Monday pledged the federal government’s full support for states facing an increase in Omicron variant COVID-19 cases and a series of home tests.

A health worker waits for people to show up for COVID-19 tests at a New Delhi metro station on Tuesday. (Manish Swarup / The Associated Press)

Biden acknowledged the long lines and chaotic scenes as Americans sought testing amid the upsurge in cases and sought to safely reunite with family and friends over the holidays. He referred to his administration’s plan to make 500 million rapid tests available to Americans starting next month through a yet-to-be-developed website.

Meanwhile, Dr Anthony Fauci, America’s top infectious disease expert, said on Monday that the United States should “seriously” consider a vaccination mandate for domestic travel. Speaking to MSNBC, Fauci, who is Biden’s chief scientific adviser on the COVID-19 response, said: “When you make vaccination a requirement, it’s another incentive to get more people vaccinated. ”

-From Reuters, The Associated Press and CBC News, last updated 2 p.m. ET

Got a question or something to say? CBC News is live in the comments now.