The novel coronavirus pandemic reached another grim milestone on Wednesday, with more than 40,000 infections now reported across Canada.

According to the latest numbers released by provincial health authorities and the Public Health Agency of Canada, by Wednesday evening there were a total of 40,179 COVID-19 cases confirmed across the country.

Quebec and Ontario remained the hardest-hit provinces on Wednesday, with 839 and 510 infections reported, respectively.

The virus has also claimed 1,974 lives in Canada.

Officials added, however, that a total of 13,999 people have recovered from COVID-19 — the disease caused by the virus — in Canada.

3:01Coronavirus outbreak: 37,374 confirmed cases, 1,728 total deaths in Canada

Coronavirus outbreak: 37,374 confirmed cases, 1,728 total deaths in Canada
       

Federal modelling released earlier this month suggests the first wave of the virus could subside in the summer.

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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that is when he expects some of the country’s social-distancing measures will be lifted and noted the country will not return to normalcy until a vaccine is developed.

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