For Municipal Partners

 Hastings Prince Edward Public Health
Online Bulletin for Municipal Partners

April 14, 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 has 26 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 260 probable cases.
    • Two area long-term care homes continue to be in COVID-19 outbreak.
    • Effective today, the Quinte 5 floor at Belleville General Hospital is no longer in outbreak.
    • More details are available on our website
  • In Canada, there are now 25,680 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 resulting in 780 deaths. To date, 437,475 individuals have been tested.
    • 33% of confirmed COVID-19 cases are 60 years of age and older; this group represents the highest proportion of hospitalizations (64%) and ICU admissions (63%).

Summary of cases of COVID-19: Ontario, January 15, 2020 to April 13, 2020

  Number      Percentage
Number of cases 7,953 N/A
Change from previous report 483 6.5% increase
Resolved 3,568 44.9
Deceased 334 4.2
Male 3,511 44.1
Female 4,393 55.2
19 and under 182 2.3
20-39 1,912 24.0
40-59 2,676 33.6
60-79 1,890 23.8
80 and over 1,287 16.2
Total Tested 113,082 N/A
Currently Under Investigation 2,107 N/A
Number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 769 N/A
Number of patients in ICU with COVID-19 255 N/A
Number of patients in ICU on a ventilator with COVID-19      199


Note: 49 cases did not specify male or female. Six cases had an unknown age.

  • There are 7,953 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ontario reported to date in iPHIS. This represents an increase of 483 confirmed cases from the previous report.
    • 44.1% of cases are male, 55.2% are female.
    • 40.0% of cases are 60 years of age and older.
    • Greater Toronto Area public health units account for 54.4% of cases.
  • 12.5% of cases were hospitalized.
  • 334 deaths have been reported (please note there may be a reporting delay for deaths in iPHIS). This is an increase of 43 deaths from the previous report.
  • Ninety-three outbreaks have been reported in long-term care homes.


New Long-term Care Guidelines

  • The Public Health Agency of Canada released interim guidance for infection prevention and control of COVID-19 for long-term care homes. The guidelines complement provincial efforts and call for a variety of measures such as identifying staff who work in more than one location, and making efforts to prevent this where possible, ensuring proper training on the use of PPE and identifying suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19 in staff, residents, and any essential visitors.

Federal Aid Programs

  • As expected, the government's $73B wage subsidy bill was passed by the Senate and received Royal Assent Saturday night; the program is expected to be rolled out within two to four weeks.
  • Almost six million Canadians have applied for support under the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB).
  • Employment and Workforce Development Minister Qualtrough has urged the provinces not to claw back this benefit to those on provincial social assistance. While Ontario has indicted that it is reviewing the CERB and considering its impact on those on social assistance, British Columbia has decided to exempt social assistant recipients from having this benefit clawed back.
  • Some $50 million in federal support is going to farmers and food processors so they can cover the costs of mandatory quarantine for foreign workers coming into Canada to help with farm labour shortages.

New Rapid Test Approved

  • Health Canada approved this past weekend a new hand-held COVID-19 test device, created by Spartan Bioscience, which provides results within an hour.
  • The test will be useful for those in rural and remote areas and among Indigenous communities as samples do not have to be send away for analysis; 10-15 tests can be done daily.
  • Some 10,000 test devices are being shipped this week to the federal government, Ontario and other interested provinces.


Premier Doug Ford said on the weekend, that, while there's a glimmer of hope resulting from recent encouraging numbers, he cautioned against jumping the gun and removing restrictions too soon; he fears getting hit by another wave. Premier Ford expressed his continued frustration with the level of testing and called for an increase of testing. The Premier also said the province is doing "absolutely everything we possibly can" to protect residents in long term care. Ontario's Associate Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Jaffe, said according to the modellers, if public health measures continue, we can expect to see the peak of COVID-19 cases this week and then a levelling off of the number of cases.

Enhanced Testing

  • Daily testing capacity will be significantly expanded to reach 8,000 tests by April 15th and 14,000 by April 29th.
  • Several priority groups will be the targeted for increased testing; these groups include: hospital patients; those in long-term care and retirement homes; health care workers, caregivers, care providers, paramedics, police and firefighters; remote, isolated, rural and Indigenous communities; congregate living centres, including homeless shelters, prisons and group homes; vulnerable populations, including patients undergoing chemotherapy or hemodialysis and requiring transplants, as well as pregnant persons, newborns and cross-border workers; and other essential workers.
  • Public health units will be able to draw on retired health care professionals and medical students to enhance their capacity to do contact tracing and case management.

Personal Protective Equipment

  • Ontario received more than 13 million masks, 200,000 N95 masks and 38 ventilators over the last week; some 6.5 million masks were shipped this past weekend to over 650 providers across the province.
  • Premier Ford thanked the Alberta government for donating 250,000 N95 masks, 2.5 million surgical masks, 15 million surgical gloves, 87,000 safety goggles, and 50 ventilators to Ontario.

New Health Data Platform

  • A new health data platform called the Pandemic Threat Response (PANTHR) is being launched by province to allow researchers to better support health system planning and responsiveness. The platform will provide secure integrated health data so that researchers can better detect, plan and respond to the pandemic through looking at risk factors for vulnerable populations, when and where outbreaks may happen, evaluating how preventative and treatment measures are working, and where to allocate equipment and other resources.

Cancelling of Child Care Fees

  • Child care centres that are closed are prohibited from collecting fees from parents and will need to ensure that that they protect child care spaces so that those reserved spots are there when parents return to work; those providing emergency care are exempted.
  • The government committed to look into whether day care could also be provided to others playing essential roles such as those working in grocery stores and providing public transit.

Extension of Emergency Orders

  • The 20 emergency orders that have been put in place to close workplaces, bars and restaurants, restrict social gatherings and price gouging have been extended until April 23rd, with the option for further extension.
  • Several new measures have been out in place to allow for:
    • The repurposing of buildings and building temporary structures like tents to reduce pressure on health care facilities and shelters.
    • Hospitals to use beds and services in retirement homes to increase their capacity.
    • Recreational camping on Crown land to be prohibited.

Emergency products, services and innovative solutions

  • The government has received over 14,000 submissions from business through its Ontario Together Portal, more than half of which has led to the purchase of $90M in emergency equipment and supplies (e.g. gloves, masks, face shields, hand sanitizers).
  • Innovative solutions are being sought to tackle remote learning for elementary and secondary students while schools are closed.


  • Bancroft Community Transit (BCT): In addition to offering assistance delivering weekly groceries on Wednesdays to clients of the area’s foodbank, NH Community Cupboard, and frozen meals on wheels, and Fridays bi-weekly to clients of CARE North Hastings, BCT has launched a grocery shop and delivery service for seniors in the northern portion of the County of Hastings. Seniors who are 55+, and have no other supports in place, will qualify, and the delivery is FREE, intake is non-invasive will a simple and quick questionnaire. Mondays from 9am-5pm grocery orders will be accepted by calling Pauline at 613-334-2385.
  • Community Care for Seniors in Prince Edward County has released an updated list of the services they are offering residents 60 years and older, including Meals on Wheels, grocery and pharmacy delivery, reassurance calls and monitoring, and active living programs. For more information, or to make a referral for hot & frozen Meals on Wheels; grocery, pharmacy & essentials delivery, call 613-476-7493, fax 613-476-7728 or email
  • Prince Edward County is allowing public access to municipal boat launches. The municipality continues to monitor conditions, given the COVID-19 outbreak and high water levels on Lake Ontario, and will make adjustments in the future if necessary. County by-law enforcement will be monitoring the boat launches to ensure compliance with the provincial regulation prohibiting social gatherings of more than five people. Signs have been installed at the boat launch sites informing the public to stay in their vehicles when waiting to launch, maintain physical distancing of 2 m/6 ft at all times, and avoid congregating.
  • Prince Edward County municipal by-law is enforcing the provincial-wide emergency order closing all outdoor recreational amenities, including playgrounds, sports fields, basketball and tennis courts, off-leash dog parks, benches, skateboard parks, picnic areas, and beaches. Violators can face fines of $750; failing to provide your name is considered obstruction and carries a fine of $1,000.
  • Prince Edward County and The Food Collective have developped a food support plan for County residents. Residents having trouble accessing or affording food now or in the coming difficult weeks and months call the PEC HELPLINE at 1-833-676-2148 (Monday - Friday between 8am and 8pm) to find out which programs are available and where to get food.
  • Help shape the local response to the economic impact of COVID-19. Take the PEC Chamber of Commerce Business Impact Survey. The County of Prince Edward is taking steps to ease the financial burden on businesses during the COVID-19 outbreak, including:
    • Deferring June and September property tax due dates to September and November, respectively, to help ease the economic impact of COVID-19.
    • Water bills will arrive in April. Before falling into arrears, call 613-476-2148 ext. 1523 from 9-5 pm, Monday to Friday to discuss payment options.
    • No tax arrears certificates registered on properties.
    • No water account disconnections.
  • In spring cleaning season, the City of Quinte West is reminding residents to hang onto their used items until donation boxes are accepting once again.
  • Quinte West also informed residents on ODSP, or who qualify as a low-income senior, that they may be eligible to receive a $300 credit on their September property tax. Application forms are available on the city’s website.

Public Health

  • HPEPH continues efforts to support COVID-19 response in Hastings and Prince Edward Counties. The COVID-19 information line remained open over the long weekend and continues to operate 7 days a week: weekdays from 8:30 am to 6:30 pm and weekends between 8:30 am and 4:30 pm.
  • Spring is an important time to check well water quality. Self-serve well water testing kit pick-up and drop-off available at the Belleville and North Hastings offices. In Belleville, water tests can be dropped off between 8:30 am and 4:30 pm Monday to Thursday and in North Hastings on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8:30 am to noon.


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