Senior government sources say an overnight curfew like the one imposed in Quebec will not be among new measures to fight soaring cases of COVID-19 in Ontario. The sources confirm that public health officials have not recommended the provincial cabinet implement a curfew. Premier Ford met with his cabinet yesterday to discuss additional restrictions, as the total number of COVID-19 deaths in the province topped 5,000. Ford says an announcement on the new measures can be expected today.
Here is yesterday’s Ontario medical update:
London Hospital CEO Fired Over Travel:
The board of the London Health Sciences Centre says it has fired president and CEO Paul Woods over his repeated travel to the US to visit family. The board had initially supported Woods when it reported on Friday that he had made five trips south of the border amid the pandemic, including over Christmas. But it announced a change of position yesterday after the announcement touched off a public backlash.
CEO of London Health Sciences Centre @LHSCCanada fired after it was revealed he travelled repeatedly to the U.S. during the pandemic https://t.co/qksNsnLs9g via @globeandmail #COVID19 #cdnhealth #onpoli pic.twitter.com/7j2M5CqCGB
— André Picard (@picardonhealth) January 11, 2021
Hamilton Lab Gave 31 People the Wrong Results:
A Hamilton laboratory has given 31 people incorrect COVID-19 test results. Hamilton Regional Laboratory Medicine says 16 people who tested positive initially received a negative result, while 15 people who didn’t have COVID-19 were told they were positive. The lab has apologized for the error and says everyone who received incorrect results has been contacted.
Toronto to Use the MTCC as a Vaccination Clinic:
Toronto is expected to open a COVID-19 vaccination clinic at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre next week, which officials say is ahead of schedule. The clinic is expected to operate seven days a week for six weeks. It will administer first and second doses of a vaccine to health-care workers during that time.
The City is opening a large COVID-19 immunization clinic next Monday at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre – weeks ahead of schedule.
This program, inoculating frontline shelter workers & others, will prepare us to vaccinate the public quickly & effectively when the time comes. pic.twitter.com/cILUyPqNVD
— John Tory (@JohnTory) January 11, 2021
Tory Calls for a Full Lockdown:
Toronto Mayor John Tory is calling on the provincial government to return to the widespread closures imposed after the COVID-19 pandemic arrived last March. Tory told CP24 that more businesses should be shut down, including big box stores, so that people have fewer places to go and return to restricting their own activities. He says that could help prevent the health-care system from being completely overwhelmed.
Here is yesterday’s update:
Yesterday Ontario reported 3,338 new COVID-19 cases along with 29 new deaths. Despite the losses, the number in hospital increased by another 80 people. 2,756 more cases were marked as resolved. 122,105 Ontarians have been vaccinated so far with 8,859 receiving their first shot on Sunday.
Ontario is reporting 3,338 cases of #COVID19 and over 46,400 tests completed. Locally, there are 931 new cases in Toronto, 531 in Peel, 241 in York Region, 168 in Niagara and 165 in Waterloo.
— Christine Elliott (@celliottability) January 11, 2021
Union Calls for Vaccination Priority for Retails and Factories:
A union representing some retail and factory staff says the government should ensure that every frontline worker has priority access to a COVID-19 vaccine. The United Food & Commercial Workers say its members risk their health every day by going to work. One of its local presidents, Shawn Haggerty, notes of outbreaks at meat processing plants and says they see a rising number of cases among retail grocery workers.
Trudeau to Host Another Cabinet Retreat:
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will host a virtual cabinet retreat on COVID-19. The retreat will involve four one-day sessions over the next two weeks, starting today. The Prime Minister’s Office says the retreat will focus on the government’s continuing efforts to manage the pandemic, including exploring ways to accelerate the rollout of vaccines.
Over the next two weeks, Cabinet will meet virtually to work on the biggest issues facing Canadians. We’ll discuss the largest vaccine rollout in our country’s history, our fight against COVID-19, and our plan for a recovery that leaves no one behind. https://t.co/UK5AePboWU
— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) January 11, 2021
COVID in Canada’s Jails:
Rights advocates and researchers are sounding an alarm about the prevalence of COVID-19 in Canadian prisons and jails. They say the numbers in recent weeks have surpassed the total during the first nine months of the pandemic, and prisoners have accounted for about 80 per cent of reported COVID-19 cases since. Public Safety Minister Bill Blair’s office says the Correctional Service has put in place extensive infection prevention and control measures.
One Shot or Two?
BC’s leading physician is defending the province’s plan to administer second doses of two approved COVID-19 vaccines 35 days after people get their first shot. The decision has sparked criticism since the recommended timeframe for the second booster dose is up to 28 days. Dr. Bonnie Henry says the World Health Organization recently approved an interval up to 42 days. Henry says administering second doses at day 35 means about 150,000 more at-risk people will be protected by their first dose before vaccine supplies are expected to rise in March.
Here is yesterday’s update:
Gorillas Testing Positive for COVID-19:
Several gorillas at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park have tested positive for COVID-19. It’s believed to be the first such cases among such primates in captivity. Lisa Peterson, the executive director at the zoo, says it appears an asymptomatic employee likely — and unknowingly — exposed the gorillas to the virus. Eight gorillas are believed to have the virus, and several have been coughing.
Waterloo Region / WDG Numbers:
Region of Waterloo Public Health announced 4 more deaths yesterday along with 164 new COVID-19 cases. There are now 1.048 active cases in the Region with 27 people hospitalized. 13 are in intensive care. Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph reported 192 new cases yesterday. That’s a 3-day total and more than half of those new cases were in Guelph. The number of active cases is at 489 with 5 people hospitalized.
ICYMI➡️Ontario has outlined a phased COVID-19 vaccination plan. Priority populations as identified by @ONgov are receiving the vaccine as part of Phase 1. For more info on the Province's plan, visit https://t.co/k36TeNvwFp pic.twitter.com/FCo6wvnQnI
— Region of Waterloo Public Health (@ROWPublicHealth) January 11, 2021
Contains files from The Canadian Press
Photo Credit: Christine Elliott via Twitter