Canada's chief public health officer says the country's current case count is nearing the peak of last year's second wave of COVID-19, as several provinces are struggling to contain new outbreaks.
Dr. Theresa Tam's statement comes as Ontario reported a record 4,456 cases of COVID-19 today.
Tam says intensive care admissions across the country increased by 23 per cent over the last seven days compared to the week before, which is putting strain on the health system.
She says COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations are increasingly impacting younger people and says there's been a jump in the number of hospitalizations among those 40 to 59 years old.
A hospital at the centre of an outbreak in northwestern New Brunswick is among those facing strain, with seven of its nine intensive care beds filled with patients fighting COVID-19.
And authorities in Quebec are tightening the curfew in the Montreal and Laval areas to 8 p.m. from 9:30 as of this evening as the province grapples with a rise in cases.