The COVID-19 strike hard in the Greater Montreal area

La COVID-19 frappe fort dans le Grand Montréal

Photo: Ryan Remiorz, The canadian Press
The greater region of Montreal counts 15 915 cases of contamination, which is more than three-quarters of the number of cases reported in the entire province of Quebec.

In Quebec, the vast majority of the deaths related to the COVID-19 occurred in the greater Montreal area (85 %), which concentrates 76 % of the cases of infection with the novel coronavirus. A portrait strongly aggravated by the outbreaks of outbreaks that have become NURSING homes and residences for seniors.

The Montreal metropolitan Community (MMC) has published on Thursday a new balance sheet of the pandemic to its territory, which includes the Montréal agglomeration, the Longueuil, Laval and the north and south suburbs, for a total of 82 municipalities.

This statistical exercise — the CMM hopes to daily — allows him to keep an eye on the spread of the virus, but also to better plan for future recovery, said one of its research consultants, Philippe Rivet. Each day, the body relies on the figures of the eve of the quebec government.

The greater region of Montreal counts 15 915 cases of contamination, which is equivalent to 378 infected persons for every 100,000 inhabitants. In comparison, the rest of Quebec, in account 5050, with a rate of 117 people infected per 100 000 inhabitants.

No doubt, the pandemic has severely hit the metropolis and its surroundings. But why ? A density of population higher than in the region and the presence of an international airport have led to a rapid spread of the virus, analysis Roxane Borgès Da Silva, professor at the School of public health of the University of Montreal.

The multicultural character of the territory has without doubt also played a role, ” adds the expert, referring to the language barrier. “It is not everyone who speaks French or English. Public health has translated its documents in several languages, but it took a long time, ” she said, in reference to the safety instructions, such as social distancing.


In mortality, the greater Montréal region occupies 967 of 1134 deaths related to the COVID-19 Quebec, is 85 %.

If the agglomeration of Montreal has the largest number of cases of infection (9856), it is the region of Laval (2296) that displays the highest rate of mortality in Québec. We speak of 435 deaths per one million inhabitants, while on the island of Montreal, this number falls to 313. Across the province, it is 48 only.

In both cases, the hecatomb lived in several NURSING homes and residences for seniors has blackened the table. In Laval, there are at least six NURSING homes that are at the top of the list of institutions most affected by the COVID-19, including the Sainte-Dorothée, where more than 55 residents lost their lives up here.

According to the CMM, 89 % of Residents who have died from the disease lived in a CHSLD or in a private seniors ‘ residence (RPA). On the island of Montreal, the rate is lower : 77 %. That said, the portrait is substantially the same for all of Quebec, argues Philippe Rivet. The proportion of people staying in a CHSLD or in the RPA carried by the COVID-19 is 82 %.

“Even before the crisis, there was a lack of staff in NURSING homes,” says Roxane Borgès Da Silva, of the University of Montreal. We had particular needs in nursing care that were not being met. When the virus is arrived, it became catastrophic, ” she said, referring to the comings and goings of employees coupled with the lack of protective gear the first few weeks.

This is a view shared by his colleague, Bryn Williams-Jones, programmes director of bioethics at the School of public health. A good number of institutions for the elderly and vulnerable have found themselves in this situation because of a ” system already weakened “, much too centralized since the reform Bar, according to him. As for the collection of data, and the pulse of the field, not to mention the capacity to test a maximum number of people, the “big machines” that are the CIUSSS are not sufficiently “agile” to deliver the goods in times of crisis.

The ethicist note, also, that the attention of the government Legault has long focused on hospitals. A reflex legitimate with what was happening in New York and Italy, he said, but ” we forgot the CHSLD where it extends to the lights today.”

Elsewhere in the world

The mortality rate is currently higher in Montreal, Laval and Toronto, says the bulletin of the CMM. The quebec metropolis, however, better than other big cities in the world, all proportions kept, like New York and Paris, for example.

While the proportion is 191 deaths per million inhabitants in the Greater Montreal area, it is of 1785 in the Big apple and 428 in the French capital.

It should, however, be cautious when it compares, highlights Roxane Borgès Da Silva. The data collection is not uniform everywhere. In Paris, take in example, the death of hiv-infected patients living in long-term care facilities — a sort of French equivalent of the CHSLD — have not been accounted for.

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