Nova Scotia has 11 known active cases of COVID-19, with two new cases (both in the Central Zone) reported in the latest government update. One person is currently hospitalized in ICU with the disease.

“Yesterday’s news of two more cases of a COVID-19 variant being in our province last month is yet another reminder that we must remain vigilant in the battle against the virus,” Premier Stephen McNeil says in a press release. “Following all the public health protocols is the way we can protect each other and keep our case numbers low.”

Nova Scotia Health Authority labs completed 1,488 tests on Feb. 10, and 175,462 tests since the second wave of the pandemic began in October.

As of Feb. 10, Nova Scotian health-care workers have dispensed 21,032 doses of COVID-19 vaccine, with 6,272 people getting the second dose that completes their inoculation.

“Outbreaks in neighbouring provinces are a reminder of how quickly COVID-19 can take hold and spread,” says Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health. “Only you can prevent this from happening here. Please continue to be vigilant.”

Elsewhere in Atlantic Canada, COVID outbreaks continue to rage, as Newfoundland and Labrador tallied 100 new cases yesterday, for a total of 213 known active cases. New Brunswick currently has 162 known cases.

Strang and McNeil are scheduled to webcast an update today at 1 p.m., but the briefings rarely start on time.

South Shore COVID clinic successful
Organizers are calling a recent COVID-19 clinic in Bridgewater successful, after 299 people showed up for testing over two days.

Dr. John Ross is medical director of Praxes Medical Group, the Halifax firm partnering with NSHA for rapid testing services. “We’re trying to normalize [testing] and make it as accessible as possible,” he says

Health officials were looking for asymptomatic people age 16 and over. Tests revealed no confirmed cases.

Keith Corcoran reports for LighthouseNow.

Maxine Mann

Mann in charge at NSCC
Maxine Mann is an experienced educator and administrator, but there’s likely nothing in her background that prepared her for the unprecedented experience of running a school during a pandemic.

The new principal at NSCC’s Pictou County campus feels the key is to remember the responsibility educators have, whether students are learning virtually or in-person.

“One thing can change people’s lives, and that’s education,” she says. “Education is very powerful.”

Heather Brimicombe has the story for The Pictou Advocate.

Pollution’s uncounted costs
It’s easy to think it’s not your problem when a business harms the environment—after all, you’re not involved and you’re not paying to clean it up. But as writer Zack Metcalfe points out, the costs of environmental damage don’t just magically disappear.

We all pay: in taxes that fund cleanup efforts, in the growing costs of extreme weather, in the damage to shared resources.

“Consider the manufacture of plastics,” Metcalfe says. “The companies producing these products do so with widespread disregard for what happens after these plastics hit the market. Inevitably they are discarded where they don’t belong and even if they find their way into landfills. We are obligated to bury them, or else allow them to disperse into our environment by way of wind or stream.”

Learn more in this Halifax Magazine column, originally published September 2019.

Sean Fraser

Notorious highway claims another life
Last week, there was another death on the notoriously dangerous Hwy. 104, at Marshy Hope in Pictou County. Liberal MP Sean Fraser laments the death but says he hopes an underway highway-twinning project will soon make the area safer.

“I had been hoping dearly for the past few years since we made the funding announcement that we might skate through a couple years without another fatality,” he says. “The dream was dashed the other day. One more life is one too many to lose.”

Drake Lowthers interview Fraser for The Reporter.

Need to know
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Halifax Magazine