For Municipal Partners

Hastings Prince Edward Public Health
Online Bulletin for Municipal Partners

March 24, 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 five lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19. The fourth confirmed case is a close contact of a previously confirmed case, the fifth is unconnected to others, with transmission from travel.
  • For all of Canada there are currenlty 1,646 lab-confirmed cases with 24 deaths.

Status of cases in Ontario (Ontario Ministry of Health)

Negative    21,795
Currently under investigation    10,074
Confirmed positive    573
Resolved    8
Deceased    7
Total number of patients approved for COVID-19 testing to date    32,457



  • Prime Minister Trudeau shared his frustration about those ignoring the message to practise social distancing and emphasized, "Enough is enough. Go home, stay home."
  • The PM held a virtual meeting Monday night with Canada's Premiers to discuss further measures, including inter-provincial border issues.
  • There has been an increase in pressure to invoke the federal Emergencies Act — which Trudeau has pointedly not ruled out, although he’s repeatedly said he’d need the support of the provinces to do so. During his daily briefing earlier on Monday, Trudeau confirmed that he would be discussing the Act when speaking with the Premiers.
  • The House of Commons meets today with 32 MPs to consider the $82 billion federal emergency aid package.
  • $192M has been allocated for research on vaccines and treatments.
  • Canada is the first country to advise the International Olympic Committee that its athletes won't compete at the Tokyo Olympics this year.
  • Efforts continue to help those stranded abroad to get home (e.g. from Peru, Spain, Morocco, Honduras, Ecuador, El Salvador and Guatemala).
  • The Office of Controlled Substances has issued a short-term subsection 56(1) exemption from the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act that authorizes pharmacists to prescribe, sell, or provide controlled substances in limited circumstances.


Closure of Non-Essential Services:

  • All non-essential workplaces are to close effective Tuesday, March 24th at 11:59 pm. The closure will be in effect for 14 days with the possibility of an extension.
  • Non-essential businesses able to have their employees operate remotely, or through other contingency measures, are given 36 hours to prepare and adapt.
  • The list of essential businesses that are permitted to stay open has been released. It includes medical, pharmaceutical, food, pet, supply chain, telecommunication, utility, manufacturing, and financial businesses, as well others.
  • A 1-800 number and website will be available on Wednesday for any enquiries.
  • Schools will not be reopening on April 6th (no alternate date has yet been proposed).

Funding for Social Services: (Municipalities, Food Banks, Shelters)

  • $200 million is being provided to municipalities and social service providers to help protect the health and safety of the province's most vulnerable.
  • The funding will help individuals and families in financial crisis who are not able to access federal assistance to cover food, rent, medicine, transportation and other services.
  • Funding will also be made available to organizations such as shelters, food banks, emergency services, charities and non-profits delivering services to First Nations as well as other vulnerable individuals and families.
  • Individuals can apply online for COVID-19 Emergency Assistance.


  • Belleville General Hospital is now accepting donations of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for all of Quinte Health Care. All PPE donations (even if packaging has been opened) are being accepted, as our local hospital supplies are limited. Donations can be dropped off between 8 am  to 4 pm at the back Sills entrance, located at the south east corner of the Sills building (currently the only accessible staff entrance). Doors may be locked but security staff will be available at the site and will accept donations.

  • All municipalities have been communicating the playground closures to their residents. This recommendation is also being shared with local school boards.

  • Recognizing the importance of keeping the construction industry moving forward, the City of Belleville has implemented changes that will enable important capital projects to continue during the COVID-19 crisis. The City has moved quickly to implement social distancing requirements and cautionary measures to allow projects capital projects to proceed.
  • Although residential pick-up service continues, Quinte Waste Solutions will be postponing operations at the Household Hazardous Waste Depot located at 75 Wallbridge Crescent, Belleville, until further notice. This also includes the cancellation of all Mobile Events planned for April:

    • CANCELLED: Saturday, April 4 – Belleville Household Hazardous Waste Depot
    • CANCELLED: Saturday, April 11 – Picton
    • CANCELLED: Saturday, April 18 – Trenton
    • CANCELLED: Saturday, April 25 – Stirling-Rawdon

Public Health

  • Hastings Prince Edward Public Health has advised the immediate closure of all municipal public playgrounds to prevent the accidental spread of COVID-19 between children sharing equipment.
  • Municipalities are also asked to encourage their residents to avoid group gatherings in public green spaces and sports fields.
  • Following recommendations for social isolation and remaining at home, HPEPH is developing recommendations and resources to support alternate means of staying active. Municipalities can help to provide health promotion messaging to residents by following HPEPH Twitter and Facebook pages and retweeting/sharing upcoming messaging about staying active and well during this time.

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