For Municipal Partners

Hastings Prince Edward Public Health
Online Bulletin for Municipal Partners

April 17, 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 have 28 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 245 probable cases.
    • Two area long-term care homes continue to be in COVID-19 outbreak.
    • More details are available on our website
  • In Canada, there are now 30,081 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 resulting in 1,193 deaths. To date, over 487,625 individuals have been tested.

Summary of cases of COVID-19: Ontario, January 15, 2020 to April 16, 2020

  Number Percentage
Number of cases 9,525 N/A
Change from previous report 564 6.3% increase
Resolved 4,556 47.8
Deceased 478 5.0
Male 4,074 42.8
Female 5,380 56.5
19 and under 210 2.2
20-39 2,164 22.7
40-59 3,067 32.2
60-79 2,214 23.2
80 and over 1,864 19.6
Total tests completed 136,992    N/A
Total tests completed in the previous day 8,899 N/A
Currently under investigation 5,993 N/A
Number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 829 N/A
Number of patients in ICU with COVID-19 245 N/A
Number of patients in ICU on a ventilator with COVID-19     200


Note: 71 cases did not specify male or female. Six cases had an unknown age.

  • There are 9,525 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ontario reported to date in iPHIS. This represents an increase of 564 confirmed cases from the previous report.
    • 42.8% of cases are male, 56.5% are female.
    • 42.8% of cases are 60 years of age and older.
    • Greater Toronto Area public health units account for 55.6% of cases.
    • 12.5% of cases were hospitalized.
  • 478 deaths have been reported (please note there may be a reporting delay for deaths in iPHIS). This is an increase of 55 deaths from the previous report.
  • One hundred six outbreaks have been reported in long-term care homes.
  • 9,001 tests were completed yesterday, surpassing the 8,000 daily test target set last week; however, public health officials now report how many samples are being processed each day, rather than how many people were being tested. This change occurred on Wednesday and means some of the 9,001 samples could have come from the existing testing backlog or from hospitalized patients, from whom a minimum of two samples are collected and processed by labs.
  • A total of 980 health-care workers have tested positive for COVID-19.


  • When asked about the opening of the economy yesterday, Prime Minister Trudeau said that until we have a vaccine ready it is "absolutely disastrous to open too quickly and have a second wave hit us." He also indicated that while Canada and the USA share special ties, it's too early to consider reopening the border. The House of Commons will be reconvening next Monday.

Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA)

  • 195,000 loans have been approved worth $7.5B in loans.
  • Businesses who have spent between $20,000 - $1.5 M for payroll in 2019 can apply for the loan; previously this payroll spending bracket was limited to $50,000 - $1M.

Canada Emergency Rent Assistance (CERA)

To provide more support to small businesses, PM Trudeau announced a new CERA plan which will:

  • Support small business in covering their rents for April, May and June.
  • Be worked out in collaboration with the premiers, as rent issues fall under provincial jurisdiction.

Securing Personal Protective Equipment

  • Contracts with numerous Canadian industries, like the Geometric Energy Corporation of Calgary have been negotiated to secure millions of gloves.


  • Premier Ford indicated yesterday that the province is ramping up its efforts until it reaches 14,000 tests a day and will be focussing on priority groups. The Premier emphasized that, "we're testing at homeless shelters, women shelters, homes of people with disabilities, women who are pregnant and newborns, people who are undergoing chemotherapy, dialysis or requiring transplants, because my top priority is making sure no one in this province is left behind."

Enabling Auto Insurance Companies to Provide Driver Rebates

  • The Ontario government has amended a regulation under the Insurance Act enabling auto insurance companies to provide temporary insurance premium rebates to drivers during the COVID-19 pandemic and up to 12 months after the emergency has ended.

Expanding Hospital Capacity to Prepare for Any COVID-19 Outbreak Scenario

The Ontario government has significantly expanded hospital capacity in preparation for any COVID-19 outbreak scenario in the following ways:

  • 1,035 acute care beds have been added for a total of 20,354 and another 4,205 to be added soon
  • 1,492 critical care beds have been added for a total of 3,504 with 2,811 now equipped with ventilators, up from 1,319 when the outbreak first started.
  • Steps have been taken to ensure hospitals have the staff available to care for a sudden surge in patients.
  • The average hospital occupancy rate is now 69.1% (64.1% for acute care only), a significant decrease from 96.2% (97.3% for acute beds) before COVID-19 measures.
  • Over 7,300 acute care beds are unoccupied.
  • Over 2,000 critical care beds are currently available across Ontario.

Pandemic Staffing Plans

To ensure each hospital has the physicians and staff needed, including in the case of a major surge, the following measures have been taken:

  • Redeploying surgical nursing staff who can now work with medicine units.
  • Sharing highly trained emergency department and intensive care unit nursing staffs across units.
  • Sharing physician resources across hospitals in a given region.
  • Recruiting family doctors to complete shifts within the hospital.
  • Recruiting retirees, including nursing and support personnel.

Ontario COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool Update

The Ministry has updated their online COVID-19 assessment tool to align questions, logic and content with the expanded COVID-19 testing principles that were released last weekend. The self-assessment tool (SAT) has been revised to include:

  • The most high-risk individuals (e.g. healthcare workers, rural, remote and Indigenous communities).
  • Additional and atypical symptoms.
  • Updated chronic conditions.
  • Lowering the age of risk from 70 to 65.


  • Many residents of Hastings and Prince Edward Counties are offering their assistance in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. At this time, HPEPH is not in need of volunteer assistance. Anyone interested in offering volunteer support to agencies within our community can contact Volunteer Information Quinte to register on the volunteer listing that will be provided to agencies reaching out for additional support.
  • 8 Wing Trenton conducted a fly-past this morning with a CH 146 Search and Rescue Griffon Helicopter at Trenton Memorial Hospital, Belleville General Hospital and Hasting’s Manor in support of healthcare workers.
  • The Best Western in Belleville is opening their doors to front-line workers (doctors, nurses, police officers, firefighters, transportation drivers, delivery drivers, and grocery store workers) at a special discounted rate. Individuals in these fields of work can call 613-969-1112 to book their stay.
  • Residents in Prince Edward County are being reminded that the only safe thing to flush is toilet paper.This is especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic, as the municipality is attempting to preserve staff resources by limiting preventable service calls. Disinfectant wipes, paper towels and facial tissues do not break down and can cause clogs and costly damage to waste water systems and home plumbing systems.
  • Until June 1, residents of Prince Edward County can continue to put out one untagged bag of garbage per household until at least June 1, at which time this change to curbside collection will be reassessed. This measure is intended to help individuals and families who are self-isolating to dispose of their garbage safely.
  • In Prince Edward County earlier this week the Council approved the Municipal Accommodation Tax (MAT) for short-term residents of the county, but the municipality will not implement the MAT on June 1, 2020, as previously proposed, deferring its enactment until a future date given the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The United Way Hastings Prince Edward has updated their website with community support information and resources for residents. Topics include grocery store hours and delivery options, food banks and meal programs, pharmacy, housing, senior transportation supports, and more.

Public Health

  • Public Health is supporting our health care community partners to arrange COVID-19 assessment and testing for individuals who meet the newly expanded criteria. Contact our COVID-19 information line at 613-966-5500 if you have a fever, new or worsened cough, shortness of breath, or one of the many atypical COVID-19 symptoms listed on our website FAQs.
  • As new questions arise during the COVID-19 outbreak, HPEPH is regularly updating the Frequently Asked Questions section of our COVID-19 webpage. Municipalities are encouraged to share with us any FAQs received related to COVID-19.
  • HPEPH reminds municipalities and business owners that the pipes of buildings dormant during the COVID-19 shut-down of non-essential businesses will require pipe flushing upon reopening to remove the stagnant water if regular flushing is not being conducted on an ongoing basis.

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