Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Theresa Tam issued that warning today as Canada confirms nine cases of the COVID-19 variant first found in the United Kingdom.  Tam says the mutations of the novel coronavirus could increase spread and if it picks up the pace of transmission, broader and stronger public health restrictions will be needed.  Tam reinforced the need to avoid all non-essential travel, calling it “really critical”.

She also confirmed that while it took five months for Canada to reach its first 100,000 cases of COVID-19, it is now only taking an average of two weeks for each additional 100,000 new cases to be reported, “This ever more rapid accumulation of cases will continue until we can make significant progress in interrupting spread, which is why we must all continue our efforts.”

Tam says there will be “challenges ahead” to curb the spread of the virus across the country.