Ontario is expected to lower the minimum age for COVID-19 vaccine eligibility across the province this week. It’s due to open vaccine appointments to people as young as 30. The government has yet to say which day it will make that change. It’s aiming to open appointments to all adults starting next week.
Premier Ford Speaks:
Yesterday Premier Ford visited the Doses After Dark vaccination clinic in Mississauga. The Premier said that summer camps will open this summer and said the province would be reopening soon.
That’s a wrap on #DosesAfterDark!🌙🎬
Thank you to everyone who came out and helped us administer close to 5,000 vaccines! 👏💉 pic.twitter.com/DfeNylNDoS
— Region of Peel (@regionofpeel) May 17, 2021
The provinces continued their COVID-19 vaccination campaigns with vigour over the weekend. Six provinces report administering at least another 317,000 shots on Sunday alone for a total of over 18.4-million jabs given so far. The four Atlantic provinces and the territories typically don’t report their vaccine data on a daily basis. About 4.5-million COVID-19 vaccine doses from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna are due to arrive this week. Meantime, neither the military nor the government has explained why Major-General Dany Fortin was abruptly removed as the Public Health Agency’s chief vaccine co-ordinator and reassigned, other than to say he is under military investigation.
Ontario has administered over 7 million doses of the #COVID19 vaccine, including 139,583 doses yesterday! Thank you to those who signed up to get vaccinated to stop the spread.
— Christine Elliott (@celliottability) May 16, 2021
Grade 12 Students Appealing For A Safe Outdoor Graduation:
Thousands of Grade 12 students across the province are rallying together to push for in-person, COVID-safe graduation ceremonies. An online petition addressed to Premier Doug Ford has garnered nearly 10,000 signatures. The high schoolers say they want physically distanced, outdoor ceremonies so that they can celebrate this milestone with a little bit of normalcy. But most school boards have already planned online-only ceremonies.
More Calls to Ease Up The LTC Rules:
Families say long-term care homes should adjust their visiting policies now that 96 per cent of residents have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19. In spite of the high vaccination rate, resident outings for social reasons and temporary absences remain banned, as are visits from family members who aren’t official caregivers. Esther Hladkowicz says she has watched her father with dementia decline after a year with little social interaction. They’ve only been able to visit through a window since September, and she wants that to change. The ministry of long-term care says the guidance will be updated after the current stay-at-home order lifts.
India’s Numbers Drop Slightly:
For the first time in weeks, India’s daily new cases dropped below 300,000 Monday, continuing a decline as the country battles a ferocious surge of COVID-19. The health ministry confirmed 280,000 cases and 4,100 deaths in the last 24 hours — but both numbers are almost certainly undercounts. Meanwhile, India’s west coast state of Gujarat is bracing for a severe cyclone that has already caused deadly flooding and is expected to make landfall Monday or early Tuesday.
It’s Reopening Day in the UK:
Travelers in England are packing their bags, bartenders are polishing their glasses and theater performers are warming up as Britain prepares for a major step out of lockdown. But the excitement over today’s re-opening vied with anxiety about a more contagious COVID-19 variant now spreading in the country. Health Secretary Matt Hancock says the variant first identified in India is more transmissible than the UK’s main strain, and it’s likely it will become the dominant variant.
Today we move forward to Step 3 of our cautious roadmap to freedom.
This is what you need to know ↓ pic.twitter.com/mrAW6YYDRO
— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) May 17, 2021
There were 4,900 new confirmed COVID-19 cases reported nationwide Sunday, bringing the country’s total confirmed case count above 1.32-million. There were also another 40 deaths. Thirty of those deaths were logged in Ontario, which also reported another 2,200 new infections. Alberta reported over 1,100 new cases. Nova Scotia reported another 126 new COVID-19 cases Sunday — most of them, again, in the area that includes Halifax. Premier Iain Rankin says Sunday’s numbers are a clear reminder that Nova Scotians must not let their guard down and must continue to follow public health protocols.
1/2 #COVID19 key concerns in Canada: to get to our better summer (more activities) & fall (no resurgence), we need to keep doing all we can to protect ourselves & others, ease the pressure on the health/public health system, and help end this pandemic. https://t.co/vUWtnAGZWN
— Dr. Theresa Tam (@CPHO_Canada) May 16, 2021
The number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 is declining in Ontario. 1,292 people were in hospital with the virus as of yesterday morning — 254 fewer than the day before. But the number of COVID patients in ICU remains high, at 714. The province reported 2,199 new COVID-19 cases yesterday, and 30 more deaths linked to the virus.
Ontario is reporting 2,199 cases of #COVID19 and over 33,100 tests completed. Locally, there are 633 new cases in Toronto, 547 in Peel, 172 in York Region, 143 in Durham and 129 in Hamilton.
— Christine Elliott (@celliottability) May 16, 2021
Waterloo Region / WDG Numbers:
Waterloo Region Public Health confirmed 66 new COVID-19 cases yesterday and no new deaths. On Saturday there were 60 new cases. Hospitalizations were down by seven this weekend to a total of 31. Heading into this week there are 505 active cases in the Region.
Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health said there were just 19 new COVID cases on Friday and 27 people in hospital. They have not updated their numbers since then. Heading into this week there are 314 active cases.
Contains files from the Canadian Press
Photo Credit: CPAC via YouTube screenshot