For Municipal Partners

Hastings Prince Edward Public Health
Online Bulletin for Municipal Partners

April 16, 2020

To ensure everyone has current information during this quickly evolving outbreak, Hastings Prince Edward Public Health will be providing regular COVID-19 updates over the next several weeks.

For more information please review our website or call 613-966-5500.



  • Hastings and Prince Edward Counties still have 27 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 252 probable cases.
  • In Canada, there are now 28,899 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 resulting in 1,048 deaths. To date, over 467,736 individuals have been tested.

Summary of cases of COVID-19: Ontario, January 15, 2020 to April 15, 2020

  Number      Percentage
Number of cases 8,961 N/A
Change from previous report 514 6.1% increase
Resolved 4,194 46.8
Deceased 423 4.7
Male 3,855 43.0
Female 5,046 56.3
19 and under 204 2.3
20-39 2,091 23.3
40-59 2,929 32.7
60-79 2,093 23.4
80 and over 1,639 18.3
Total tests completed 128,093 N/A
Total tests completed in the previous day 9,001 N/A
Currently under investigation 4,323 N/A
Number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 807 N/A
Number of patients in ICU with COVID-19 248 N/A
Number of patients in ICU on a ventilator with COVID-19        200


Note: 60 cases did not specify male or female. Five cases had an unknown age.

  • There are 8,961 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ontario reported to date in iPHIS. This represents an increase of 514 confirmed cases from the previous report.
    • 43.0% of cases are male, 56.3% are female.
    • 41.7% of cases are 60 years of age and older.
    • Greater Toronto Area public health units account for 54.8% of cases.
    • 12.7% of cases were hospitalized.
  • 423 deaths have been reported (please note there may be a reporting delay for deaths in iPHIS). This is an increase of 38 deaths from the previous report.
  • One hundred four outbreaks have been reported in long-term care homes.


  • During his remarks yesterday, Prime Minister Trudeau indicated that "Our priority is to avoid seeing our health care system overwhelmed," and avoiding having Canada's 1-2% mortality rate skyrocketing to 10% as has been seen in other countries.”

Expanding the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)

  • Prime Minister Trudeau announced expanded eligibility under the CERB to make it available for those:
    • Earning $1,000 or less a month.
    • Expecting a seasonal job that isn't coming.
    • Who've run out of employment insurance since last January 1st.

Protecting the Vulnerable

To protect the most vulnerable in long-term care facilities and those working as essential workers, the Prime Minister said that the federal government will:

  • Increase the pay of essential workers earning less than $2,500 a month, including the long-term facility workers.
  • Raise in his meeting with the provinces Thursday night ways to get this wage boost in place as quickly as possible and other ways to support seniors who are vulnerable.
  • Dr. Theresa Tam, the chief public health officer of Canada, says models are now predicting between 1,200 and 1,620 deaths from COVID-19 by April 21. Last week the projections expected between 500 and 700 deaths this week, and Canada today has confirmed 1,048 deaths.
  • Dr. Tam says the overall curve is "bending" when it comes to the number of new infections being confirmed in Canada but the death rate is higher than expected because such a high proportion of outbreaks are in long term care centres.
  • Dr. Tam says more than 90 percent of the patients confirmed to have died from COVID-19 are over the age of 60, and half of them lived in long term care centres.

Protecting Canadians’ Mental Health

  • To help Canadians struggling with their mental health, the federal government has launched a new portal "Wellness Together Canada" dedicated to mental wellness. It can be found at and on the Canada COVID-19 app and serves to:
    • Connect Canadians to peer support workers, social workers, psychologists and other professionals for confidential chat sessions or phone calls.
    • Make it easier to find credible information and help address mental health and substance use issues.

Support from the Canadian Armed Forces

  • The Canadian Rangers have been deployed to help Nunavut and northern Quebec communities in their fight against COVID-19.

Procuring Testing Materials and Supplies

  • LumenUltra New Brunswick has ramped up its production of chemicals required for COVID-19 test kits so it can meet the province's weekly needs.
  • The federal government has received thousands of swabs and chemicals in the past few days that are now being distributed to provinces.
  • Public Procurement minister Anita Anand says 1.1 million more N95 respirator masks will arrive in Canada from China this week. She says six flights from China have already arrived, and four more are coming this week. Already 17 million surgical masks and 800,000 N95 respirators have arrived.


  • Calling it the fight of our lives, Premier Ford said yesterday, "when the history books are written, [we] will be judged on how we looked out for each other, but even more importantly, ...who we looked out [for] and who could not look after themselves...we owe it to the most vulnerable... to fight this virus until the end." The Premier emphasized that his government is doing everything possible to support those in long-term care homes, mobilizing every available resource to fortify the "iron ring" around long-term care homes.

Ramping Up Protection for Long-Term Care Residents

  • The Ministry of Health has released the COVID-19 Action Plan: Long-Term Care Homes. This three-point action plan adds critical new measures to prevent further outbreaks and deaths from COVID-19 in long-term care homes, including:
  • Aggressive Testing, Screening, and Surveillance:
    • Enhancing testing for symptomatic residents and staff and those who have been in contact with persons confirmed to have COVID-19.
    • Expanding screening to include more asymptomatic contacts of confirmed cases.
    • Leveraging surveillance tools to enable care providers to move proactively against the disease.
  • Managing Outbreaks and Spread of the Disease:
    • Supporting long-term care homes with public health and infection control expertise to contain and prevent outbreaks.
    • Providing additional training and support for current staff working in outbreak conditions.
  • Growing the Long-Term Care Workforce:
    • Redeploying staff from hospitals and home/community care to support the long-term care home workforce and respond to outbreaks.
    • Continuing intensive recruitment initiatives.

Promises for the next 48 hours

As part of this plan, the provincial government committed yesterday afternoon to immediately deliver within less than 48 hours the following measures:

  • Enhanced testing and surveillance for symptomatic residents and staff and those in contact with persons confirmed to have COVID-19.
  • Testing of asymptomatic residents and staff in select homes across the province to better understand how COVID-19 is spreading.
  • Risk and capacity assessments for all homes.
  • Infection control and preventions teams and additional supports in collaboration with Ontario Health, the Ontario Hospital Association and public health units.
  • Enhanced guidance on personal protective equipment and continued priority distribution to homes.
  • Enhanced training and education to support staff working in outbreak situations.
  • Redeploying hospital and home care resources into homes.

Helping long-term care workers make up for lost wages

The government issued an emergency order directing long-term care employers to ensure their employees, including registered nurses, registered practical nurses, personal support workers, kitchen and cleaning staff only work in one long-term care home. To help long-term care workers make up any lost wages, the government:

  • Encourages long-term care employers to offer full-time hours to their part-time employees during the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • Has provided emergency funds so long-term care homes can cover the incremental costs of increasing hours for part-time staff to help those staff limit their work locations.


  • The City of Belleville reminded residents in a release today that trails are open for use but signage and physical distancing directives must be heeded. Many of the trails pass through park spaces and it is important residents understand it is the trails alone that are open, not the parks. The following link offers a map that includes park and outdoor amenity closures in addition to showing the trails open for local enjoyment: COVID-19 Belleville Park Viewer. City bylaw officers are working in cooperation with Belleville Police Service to ensure the rules are being followed and will issue fines or more severe penalties to anyone not doing so.
  • Municipalities are encouraging residents to support local businesses by buying gift-certificates, purchasing online for delivery or touchless pick-up and purchasing take-out from local restaurants.
  • For those residents of Marmora and Lake who have curbside trash pickup: the Municipality will continue to offer one free bag of garbage per household each week at the curbside pickup until further notice. All additional bags of garbage will require a bag tag.
  • Community Care for Seniors in Prince Edward County is offering pick-up and delivery of groceries, medicine and other essentials to residents 60 years and older. Call 613-476-7493 for more information.

Public Health

  • HPEPH issued a media release this morning regarding the increase in COVID-19 testing that is now possible due to expanded testing criteria and the opening of two new local assessment centres. Please review the release for more information about testing in Hastings and Prince Edward Counties.
  • As more is learned about COVID-19, evidence has shown that the virus may present unusual symptoms, particularly in individuals over 60 and those under 16 years of age. A complete list of typical and atypical COVID-19 symptoms are available in Frequently Asked Questions section of the HPEPH COVID-19 page.
  • HPEPH has cancelled the Pool and Spa course planned for May and the Small Drinking Water Owner/Operator courses planned for July. Courses may be rescheduled later in the summer.

We want to ensure this bulletin is as useful as possible. Please send your questions, comments and suggestions to

Contact Information: 

To give us your comments:

You have received this email at from Hastings Prince Edward Public Health as a result of a request you have made or due to a service/subscription that you are registered for. While you may discontinue your subscription to this mailing at any time by pressing the unsubscribe button below, this bulletin will be used to provide important updates about COVID-19 in our community.