Across Ontario there were 111 new cases of COVID19 and four new deaths announced yesterday. Health Minister Christine Elliott said Ottawa accounts for 25 of the new cases with 22 more in Windsor-Essex. There were only six in Toronto. 106 more people are now recovered.
Will All of Ontario Move to Stage 3 on Friday?
The last three regions of the province still in Stage 2 of the COVID19 recovery plan will find later today if they’re cleared to enter the next phase. Toronto, Peel and Windsor-Essex are still operating under Stage 2 rules, which keep businesses like gyms, bars and theatres closed. Premier Ford is expected to announce this afternoon whether those regions have the green light to enter Stage 3. The rest of the province has been in Stage 3 for days, but Ford said the government was waiting for data from the last three regions before making a decision.
Here is Premier Ford’s news conference from yesterday:
Drug Approved in Canada to Treat COVID19:
Remdesivir is the first drug to be approved by Health Canada for treatment of patients with severe COVID19 symptoms. The federal agency says the antiviral drug may be used to treat adults and adolescent patients with pneumonia who need extra oxygen to help them breathe. Remdesivir, which has been shown to shorten hospital stays, is administered intravenously and will be used only on patients who can be closely monitored.
— Health Canada and PHAC (@GovCanHealth) July 28, 2020
Looking Ahead to a Vaccine:
Canada’s chief medical officer says an independent vaccine task force is advising the government on options for Canada’s choice of COVID19 vaccine when one becomes available. Dr. Theresa Tam says active discussions are taking place to potentially pre-order doses for Canadians. She says the government is also exploring the possibility of manufacturing a potential pandemic cure at home.
Here is yesterday’s federal government update:
Calls for Changes to Pandemic Rent Relief:
A lobby group says landlords need to be taken “out of the equation” of the government’s small business rent relief plan. The Canadian Federation of Independent Business has issued an open letter as another month’s rent becomes due. The Canada’s Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program is designed so that tenants, landlords and the government would each bear some of the monthly rent payment for struggling businesses. But the federation says participation in Canada’s Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program is still too low and reform is needed.
August Long Weekend:
With a long weekend coming up, chief medical officer Dr. Theresa Tam says she’s worried about the increase of COVID19 cases in some provinces. Tam says there are differing scenarios leading to the upticks, but they are combining to cause the national curve to climb. She reminds Canadians the fate of the COVID19 curve is within our hands.
Charges for Failing to Quarantine:
A Chatham man has been charged under the federal Quarantine Act after being accused of refusing to self-isolate after he returned from a trip to Florida. Police say they received a tip last week that the man was not complying with orders to remain in isolation for 14 days. They say he had flown back to Toronto from the COVID19 hotspot on July 10th and potentially exposed members of his family, friends and the community to the virus. Police say he was issued a fine of $1,130 dollars.
BC Back-To-School Plan:
The BC government will introduce its back-to-school plans today as the new school year fast approaches. Education Minister Rob Fleming says the plans build on lessons learned during BC’s June return to classes supported by provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry. Last June, Kindergarten-to-Grade 5 students were given the option of attending classes on alternate days, and students in grades 6 to 12 could attend school one day a week while continuing with virtual classes at home.
PEI is COVID19 Free:
Prince Edward Island’s chief medical officer is giving the tiny province a clean bill of health — when it comes to COVID19. Doctor Heather Morrison says all 36 cases reported since the start of the pandemic are now considered recovered. Morrison also announced the opening of the family connection stream during yesterday’s weekly COVID19 briefing. Family members of Island residents who are Canadian citizens, have permanent residency status and live outside of Atlantic Canada can now apply for entry to the province.
Here is yesterday’s PEI Update:
McDonald’s Closing Some Locations:
McDonald’s will close 200 locations in the U.S. as the chain faces a bumpy recovery from the COVID19 pandemic after second quarter global sales dropped by 30 percent due to lockdowns limiting operations to drive-thru and delivery. The fast-food company reported a bigger-than-expected drop in second-quarter profits yesterday as a result of much lower sales due to coronavirus closures that affected most of the chain’s worldwide network. The fast-food company suffered a 68 percent drop in profits to $483.8 million, following a 30 percent decline in revenues to $3.8 billion.
Decline in US Numbers:
New coronavirus cases across the United States have started to decline for the first time in five weeks and the average daily toll of 66,000 infections is now the lowest it has been in 10 days. Infections have been surging since early June when COVID-19 started spreading rapidly throughout the Sunbelt states and the US recorded single daily highs of more than 77,000 infections. The US is now showing early signs that surging case numbers may be leveling out with week-over-week tallies showing infections have dropped two percent for the first time after rising steadily for five weeks.
Trump Defending Doctors That Claim Hydroxychloroquine Works:
President Donald Trump defended the doctor whose claimed that hydroxychloroquine is a cure for coronavirus after her videos were removed by Twitter and resulted in his son’s account being suspended. Dr. Stella Immanuel has a long history of supporting conspiracy theories and Trump ended his Tuesday press conference when pressed about his own retweets of her claims about hydroxy. “She was on air along with many other doctors,” he said. “They were big fans of hydroxychloroquine. And I thought she was very impressive in the sense that from where she came – I don’t know which country she comes from – but she says she’s had tremendous success with hundreds of different patients and I thought her voice was an important voice but I know nothing about her.”
Big Pharma is taking television ads trying to make the case that I am raising prescription drug prices on seniors. The ad is a lie! What I have done will lead to a 50% REDUCTION in prices, at least, & Big Pharma is not happy about it. No other President would….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 28, 2020
How to Play CFL Football During COVID19:
The federal government is looking at imposing quarantine rules similar to those being used by the NHL should a shortened 2020 CFL season take place. Chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam says they’re discussing the NHL cohort quarantine approach with the Canadian Football League. It puts hockey players in quarantine together and isolates them from the general public rather than individual 14-day quarantines after crossing the border. The CFL employs many American players who would need to cross the border.
Miami Marlins COVID19 Infections:
The Miami Marlins season has been paused, Marlins podcaster Craig Mish reported. The team will temporarily take a break as 15 players — half their active roster — and two coaches tested positive for coronavirus over the past few days. It is unclear how long this break will last for the Marlins, or how MLB will handle the changes that would bring to the schedule.
Today’s update: pic.twitter.com/9GpP318x9D
— Miami Marlins (@Marlins) July 28, 2020
Waterloo Region / WDG Numbers:
Yesterday Waterloo Region Public Health announced zero new COVID19 cases. It’s the first time the Region was at zero in over 4 months. Once again there were no new deaths and 1 more case was recovered so the number of active cases in the Region has dropped to 41. One area of concern from the medical officer of health yesterday was the age of the people who have been testing positive lately. Since testing was opened up to the general public at the end of May, the under 19 and 20-29 age categories have seen the largest increases in positive cases. Dr Wang is again reminding young people abut the importance of physical distancing and remaining with your social bubble. In Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph yesterday, there was only 1 new case reported. There are just 27 active at the moment.
Contains files from The Canadian Press
Photo Credit: CPAC via YouTube screenshot