Today Premier Ford is expected to announce sweeping new restrictions across Ontario. The cabinet met yesterday to discuss the proposed new restrictions that will deal with the rise in new cases, fueled by the variants. Solicitor General Sylvia Jones won’t say what measures are being considered and when asked if cabinet would consider a curfew, she said all options are on the table.
Dr Yaffe Calls It a Dire Situation:
One of the province’s top doctors has called Ontario’s COVID-19 situation dire. Dr. Barbara Yaffe, Ontario’s associate medical officer of health, says she has never seen things so bad. The province set a new record for daily infections _ logging 4,736 cases yesterday. She says Ontario’s seven-day average for daily cases had jumped by 36 per cent in one week.
Here is yesterday’s update:
Canada’s deputy chief public health officer says more than 8.8-million doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered in Canada. Dr. Howard Njoo says there have been 3,444 adverse events following vaccinations, including any mild event such as soreness or a slight fever. But he says there have been 464 reports that were considered serious, such as a severe allergic reaction. Major-General Dany Fortin, who is overseeing logistical planning for Canada’s vaccine distribution, says 12.7-million doses of vaccine have been delivered to provinces and territories to date.
Over the past few months, we have ramped up our vaccine infrastructure and we now have the capacity to administer millions of vaccines a month.
— Doug Ford (@fordnation) April 15, 2021
Grey-Bruce Orders Residents to Stay Home for 48-Hours:
The Grey Bruce Health Unit is telling its residents to consider themselves a COVID-19 carrier and stay home for the next 48 hours. Authorities say the steps are necessary after 70 new cases were confirmed in the region in the past 36 hours. The Grey Bruce Health Unit says the advisory to stay home is on top of Ontario’s pre-existing stay-at-home-order. The unit is cancelling a mass vaccination clinic on Saturday to redeploy staff to case management and contact tracing efforts.
Community outbreak in Eastern Grey county declared.
— GreyBruceHealthUnit (@GBPublicHealth) April 15, 2021
Tragic News Coming Out of Brazil:
Reports are emerging of Brazilian health workers forced to insert tubes into patients without the aid of sedatives. This as hospitals and state governments run out of critical medicines. One doctor in Rio de Janeiro told The Associated Press that since its stock of sedatives ran out, nurses and doctors have been using neuromuscular blockers and tying patients to their beds. The doctor says some patients try to resist and are conscious. Lack of required medicines is the latest pandemic problem in Brazil.
York Region Opens Up Thousands of New Appointments:
York Region says it’s making 13,500 new COVID-19 vaccine appointments available. Effective this morning at 8:30 a.m. eligible York Region residents can book an appointment online. York Region says it will offer additional appointments as more vaccine becomes available.
York Region Chairman and CEO Wayne Emmerson along with York Regional Council has issued a statement reaffirming our confidence in York Region Medical Officer of Health Dr. Karim Kurji and support his leadership in our collective fight against #COVID19. https://t.co/z3ShhSO2Zi pic.twitter.com/wQdPWqynCu
— York Region (@YorkRegionGovt) April 15, 2021
The TTC is Adding Buses to Slow Overcrowding:
The Toronto Transit Commission says it will add buses to busy routes to help avoid overcrowding. The statement comes in response to photos of a packed morning bus on Bloor Street West that circulated on social media Wednesday. A spokesman says the public transit system has been using a demand-based service model during the COVID-19 pandemic. He says the TTC has had more scheduled bus service available in recent months than it did pre-pandemic.
Westjet Wondering Where Their Bailout Is:
WestJet’s CEO says the federal government’s aid package for Air Canada could be problematic unless his company gets equitable treatment. In a memo obtained by The Canadian Press, Ed Sims tells employees the government is now the fourth-largest shareholder in their biggest competitor, spurring him to insist on comparable terms. Sims says he’s asking the government for new aircraft financing, domestic tourism stimulus and supply-chain reform to avoid price hikes.
We continue discussions with the Government of Canada on a safe travel-restart framework. We remain focused on a long-term solution that will serve the best interests of Canadians. Read our full statement here: https://t.co/KfXP6SB67Z pic.twitter.com/Yad7LQfhFM
— WestJet (@WestJet) April 13, 2021
ICU Staff are Burning Out Quick:
Some doctors and managers of intensive care units say they’re worried about burnout among staff amid the third wave of the pandemic. Raman Rai, the ICU manager at Humber River Hospital in Toronto, says it’s difficult for her team to watch the current surge in cases playing out. Both Rai and Humber River intensivist Doctor Ali Ghafouri say ICU staff are burning out with no end to the crisis in sight. Staff are working to accommodate transfers across Ontario’s health system as hospitals deal with an unprecedented number of COVID cases needing intensive care.
LTC Homes Facing a Staffing Shortage:
Ontario’s nursing homes say an ongoing staffing exodus has worsened what was an already critical situation pre-pandemic. They say the lack of personnel has left them ill-equipped to fill six-thousand empty beds as a safety valve for hospitals struggling with an influx of COVID-19 patients. The Ontario Long Term Care Association says about 38,500 people also remain on waiting lists for a long-term care space. The association says the main problem now is the outflow of nurses and other registered health professionals.
Iqaluit Now Under a Strict Lockdown After a New Case Was Discovered:
Nunavut’s capital city is under a strict lockdown after logging its first case of COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic. All schools, non-essential businesses and government offices in Iqaluit are closed. The territory’s Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Michael Patterson, says the infected person has been in Nunavut for 16 days and only started showing symptoms two days ago. Officials say contact tracing is underway.
Canada has recorded nearly 10,000 new cases of COVID-19. 9,562 new infections were reported yesterday in Newfoundland and Labrador, PEI, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, BC and Nunavut. The death toll has climbed to 23,500. 55 new fatalities have been reported in BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec.
Here is yesterday’s federal update:
Ontario hit a record-high with 4,736 new cases of COVID-19 reported yesterday. Health Minister Christine Elliott says there are 1,188 new cases in Toronto, 983 in Peel Region, 526 in York Region and 342 in Ottawa. The province also says there were 29 more deaths linked to the virus. There are 1,932 people in hospital with COVID-19, with 659 patients in intensive care and 419 on a ventilator.
Ontario is reporting 4,736 cases of #COVID19 and nearly 65,600 tests completed. Locally, there are 1,188 new cases in Toronto, 983 in Peel, 526 in York Region, 342 in Ottawa, 216 in Durham and 215 in Niagara.
— Christine Elliott (@celliottability) April 15, 2021
Waterloo Region / WDG Numbers:
Waterloo Region Public Health confirmed 64 new cases yesterday, which pushes the region over 13,000 infections since the pandemic began. There were no new deaths and the number of active cases dropped by thirteen to 625.There is still 31 people hospitalized.
Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph announced 102 new cases yesterday but no new deaths. There are now 620 active cases with 8 hospitalized and 6 in intensive care. Of the new cases: 27 were in Wellington, 26 were in Dufferin and 52 were in Guelph.
Contains files from The Canadian Press
Photo Credit: CPAC via YouTube screenshot