After Quebec’s highest medical officer of health announced the province is on its worst drinking and driving track since 2011, the office of the province’s health minister says the province’s COVID-19 cases have jumped higher than expected, reports CBC News.
Quebec Health Minister Gaétan Barrette says the state of affairs isn’t good but that he isn’t a happy that the media reported on the previous health boss’ predictions. He says “Let’s save the self-inflicted bleeding until the problem is actually serious. I don’t think we’ve got that done yet. I hope we don’t have to rush into any measures in the short-term”
Quebec health surveillance officials say they now know the number of deaths is too low and now believe eight people died in the province due to alcohol-related crashes in February, compared to Barrette’s earlier comments that four deaths were reported to be due to COVID-19.
Barrette says Quebec has begun raising awareness about the issue after the previous health boss suggested mandatory tests of drinking drivers to determine their blood-alcohol content could be put in place by the end of May. But the health minister says the next public announcement about COVID-19 could come soon.