Hastings Prince Edward Public Health
Online Bulletin for Municipal Partners
April 6, 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 now have 21 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 284 probable cases. Two area long-term care homes and Quinte 5 floor at Belleville General Hospital are currently in COVID-19 outbreak. More details are available on our website hpePublicHealth.ca.
- In Canada, there are currently 15,822 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 resulting in 293 deaths.
- About one third (32%) of cases are 60 years old and over with this age group representing the highest proportion of hospitalizations (61%) and ICU admissions (60%).
- Nine hospitalizations and one admission to ICU were reported in individuals ≤ 19 years of age.
- 72% of COVID-19 cases were related to community transmission, while 28% were either exposed while travelling or exposed to a traveler coming to Canada.
- 323,297 people have been tested for COVID-19.
- The Public Health Agency of Canada has noted that "the number of illnesses in Canada is continuing to increase and has not yet peaked."
Summary of cases of COVID-19: Ontario, January 15, 2020 to April 5, 2020
| ||Number ||Percentage |
|Number of cases ||4,347 ||N/A |
|Change from previous report ||309 ||7.7% increase |
|Resolved ||1,624 ||37.4 |
|Deceased ||132 ||3.0 |
|Demographics || || |
|Male ||2,054 ||47.3 |
|Female ||2,269 ||52.2 |
|19 and under ||107 ||2.5 |
|20-39 ||1,167 ||26.8 |
|40-59 ||1,537 ||35.4 |
|60-79 ||1,077 ||24.8 |
|80 and over ||455 ||10.5 |
|Testing || || |
|Total Tested ||78,796 ||N/A |
|Currently Under Investigation ||329 ||N/A |
|Hospitalizations || || |
|Number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 ||589 ||N/A |
|Number of patients in ICU with COVID-19 ||216 ||N/A |
|Number of patients in ICU on a ventilator with COVID-19 ||160 || |
Note: 24 cases did not specify male or female. The age of four cases were unknown.
- There are 4,347 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ontario reported to date in iPHIS. This represents an increase of 309 confirmed cases from the previous report.
- 47.3% of cases are male, 52.2% are female.
- 35.2% of cases are 60 years of age and older.
- Greater Toronto Area public health units account for 51.9% of cases.
- Of all cases, 19.8% had travelled in the 14 days prior to becoming ill, 13.0% had close contact with a confirmed case, 19.3% had community exposure and 47.9% have exposure information pending.
- 12.4% of cases were hospitalized and 132 deaths have been reported (please note there may be a reporting delay for deaths in iPHIS).
- Forty-six outbreaks have been reported in long-term care homes.
Friday, Prime Minister Trudeau announced the following:
- $100 M through Canada's Local Food Infrastructure Fund to support funding to national, regional, and local organizations across Canada that are able to support those experiencing food insecurity:
- $50M for Food Banks Canada.
- $20M for the Salvation Army Second Harvest, Community Food Centres Canada, and Breakfast Club of Canada.
- $30 million for local-level organizations who serve people experiencing food insecurity.
- An agreement with Amazon Canada for the distribution of critical equipment to provinces and territories.
- Military help to Quebec to assist with building temporary medical infrastructure and setting up tents within the province's northern communities.
During Prime Minister Trudeau's press conferences over the weekend, he spoke about the following:
Canadian Emergency Relief Benefit
- Those seeking support through this new program will be able to apply this Monday through Canada.ca.
- Funds will be transferred within 3-5 days for those using direct deposit.
- Over one million employment insurance claims have been processed.
Seasonal Workers, Student Summer Jobs and the Military
- Employers will be able to bring in foreign workers to support seasonal work with food growers and wine producers.
- There's a recognition that students will be challenged to find employment to support their post-secondary studies; further news about supports for students is expected to be announced in the coming days.
- The government is offering full-time jobs for reservists to bolster the military.
- Discussions will continue with President Trump and his administration in response to his blocking of N95 mask shipments to Canada in order to resolve this issue; there continues to be a global shortage while Canada's domestic production ramps up.
Funding for the Homelessness and Women Fleeing Violence
- More details were provided about the $207.5M in funding for those experiencing homelessness and women fleeing violence during the pandemic.
- $157.5M million for those experiencing homelessness through the Reaching Home program to purchase beds and physical barriers for social distancing and securing accommodation to reduce overcrowding in shelters.
- $40 million to Women and Gender Equality Canada to address needs of shelters and sexual assault centres:
- $26 million to Women's Shelters Canada to distribute to approximately 575 violence against women shelters across the country.
- $4 million to the Canadian Women's Foundation to distribute the funding to sexual assault centres across the country).
- $10M to Indigenous Services Canada's to support 46 emergency shelters on reserve and in Yukon to support Indigenous women and children fleeing violence.
Call for Volunteers
- Recruitment continues for specialized volunteers to assist with tackling COVID-19 (e.g. tracking cases, reporting data) continues until April 24th. More information is available on the Government of Canada’s website.
Reaching Out to Kids
- Prime Minister Trudeau and Dr. Tam connected over the weekend with kids from across Canada through video. You can see here the photos, videos and questions they responded to among the 4,000 submissions they received on YouTube.
Seasonal Trailer Parks and Recreational Campgrounds Closures
- The Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing issued a joint release with the Office of the Solicitor General on Friday, stating that seasonal trailer parks and recreational campgrounds are not listed as essential businesses and are required to close by midnight Saturday, April 4.
- For Ontarians recently returned to the country whose only Canadian residence is at one of these seasonal trailer parks or campgrounds, they are permitted to continue their occupancy and complete their mandatory self-isolation as required by the mandatory isolation order made by the federal government under the Quarantine Act which took effect on March 25, 2020.
Supporting Ontario's Food Supply
- A new online web portal was launched by the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs to support Ontario's food supply chain through expediting the filling of vacancies in the agri-food sector. The new portal connects workers with employers in areas such as farming, food processing, food retail and transportation; it lists job opportunities and training resources.
Increasing Public Health Capacity
- The public will be able to access their test results through a new online portal thus freeing up public health staff to focus on other tasks.
- A new emergency order gives heath units: the flexibility to reassign staff, hire retired nurses, medical students and volunteers to increase its capacity to do contact tracing and management; the ability to override collective agreement provisions when redeploying staff; and the ability to cancel or postpone other services not deemed critical to pandemic planning.
Modelling and Projections
In sharing Public Health Ontario's models and projections about the impact of COVID-19 on Friday, CEO Dr. Peter Donnelly noted the following:
- 100,000 deaths could have occurred without any public health interventions.
- Public health measures have prevented 4,400 deaths and potentially 220,000 cases.
- With full existing public health measures, there could be from 3,000 to 15,000 deaths.
- There could be 80,000 cases by the end of April, and potentially 1,600 deaths.
- The number of cases and deaths could be reduced to 12,500 and 200 respectively with the introduction of additional measures including:
- increased testing (e.g. those in long term care, retirement homes, health care workers).
- more aggressive contact testing and case management.
- enhanced support for vulnerable populations.
- restricting the movement of health care workers between settings.
- use of technology to reinforce self-isolation (alerts).
- enhanced public education and communications.
- The full pandemic, including a second and potential tertiary wave could last 18 months to 2 years.
He noted that research shows that jurisdictions that bear down heavily can prevent deaths while at the same time allowing the economy to bounce back. In describing the capacity of the health care system, Dr. Matt Anderson, CEO of Ontario Health noted that;
- There are 410 intensive care beds in Ontario and some 900 more are being added.
- While Ontario is at 70 percent capacity, this level varies across the province and if the number of cases needing intensive care increases, Ontario could soon surpass its capacity.
The COVID-19 modelling presentation is available online.
Further Business Closures
- The list of essential business that can remain open is being further reduced.
- While organizations dealing with food, transportation, health care and social services can remain open, cannabis, hardware, vehicle supplies, pet stores and office supply stores are being removed from the essential services list and will need to move online.
- Non-essential construction sites will be shut down; no new residential construction will be able to start; some 60 new inspectors are being brought on board.
Online Learning Begins for Ontario Students
- Today Ontario elementary and secondary teachers have begun offering distance education, many through Google Classroom, to help support parents and students during the school closures that will be in effect until at least May 4. The ministry is recommending elementary students spend between five and 10 hours on learning per week, depending on the age.
- A new, referral-only COVID-19 assessment centre has been opened in Prince Edward County. The assessment centre’s purpose is to assess and, when appropriate, test people who may be infected with COVID-19, in an environment where risk of transmission is low. The COVID-19 Assessment Centre is by appointment only and will operate 7 days per week, from 9 am to 5 pm. For safety reasons, unscheduled appointments are strictly prohibited. Not every patient who is seen at the assessment centre will be tested.
- In Prince Edward County, municipal by-law enforcement is working to ensure the public complies with the provincial-wide emergency order closing all outdoor recreational amenities. This includes but is not limited to playgrounds, sports fields, basketball and tennis courts, off-leash dog parks, benches, skateboard parks picnic areas, and beaches. Green spaces that you can walk through such as trails, shoreline, and boardwalk areas remain open for walkthrough access provided individuals maintain the safe physical distance of at least two metres apart from others.
- Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, The City of Belleville has closed public access to all Municipal Buildings. Staff remain working and business with the city can be accomplished through email, phone, video-conferencing or courier. For deliveries and other activities requiring direct access to City Hall, the City of Belleville has established strict screening and sign-in protocols for all visitors to ensure the health and safety of employees. Contact the office for questions and to request accommodation.
- United Way Hastings Prince Edward together with Procter & Gamble, Volunteer & Information Quinte, Community Development Council, Belleville Community Trust, among others announced the launch of the COVID-19 Community Response. As part of the partnership, Volunteer & Information Quinte has used their information database to develop a listing of available COVID-19 essential resources. In an effort to respond to the increasing needs in the community, VIQ is pleased to launch their COVID-19 resource portal available at www.viq.ca.
- HPEPH has updated signage for health care providers and businesses to post at their entry points to assist with screening entering individuals.
- To ensure that all residents of Hastings and Prince Edward Counties are aware of the information and supports offered by HPEPH during the pandemic, regardless of their access to technology, we have expanded upon current website and social media communications to include a COVID-19 information capaign with radio and newspaper ads for the duration of April.
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