For Municipal Partners

Hastings Prince Edward Public Health
Online Bulletin for Municipal Partners

May 13, 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 42 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 182 probable cases, with 27 lab-confirmed cases having recovered and 5 deceased.
    • Approximately 5,030 COVID-19 tests have been conducted, with a 0.9% positivity rate.
    • Facilities experiencing COVID-19 outbreak can be found online.
    • More details are available on our website
  • In Canada, there are 71,486 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 resulting in 5,209 deaths. To date, over 1,163,816 individuals have been tested.

Summary of cases of COVID-19: Ontario, January 15, 2020 to May 12, 2020

  Number      Percentage
Number of cases 21,236 N/A
Change from previous report 329 1.6 increase
Resolved 15,845 74.6
Deceased 1,765 8.3
Male 8,923 42.0
Female 12,155 57.2
19 and under 571 2.7
20-39 5,045 23.8
40-59 6,481 30.5
60-79 4,544 21.4
80 and over 4,581 21.6
Total tests completed 475,058 N/A
Total tests completed in the previous day 15,137 N/A
Currently under investigation 13,395 N/A
Number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 1,018 N/A
Number of patients in ICU with COVID-19 189 N/A
Number of patients in ICU on a ventilator with COVID-19     144 N/A

Note: 158 cases did not specify male or female. 14 cases had an unknown age.

  • There are 21,236 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ontario reported to date. This represents an increase of 329 confirmed cases from the previous report.
    • 42.0% of cases are male, 57.2% are female.
    • 43.0% of cases are 60 years of age and older.
    • Greater Toronto Area public health units account for 62.4% of cases.
    • 12.7% of cases were hospitalized.
  • 1,765 deaths have been reported (please note there may be a reporting delay for deaths). This is an increase of 40 deaths from the previous report.
  • 256 outbreaks have been reported in long-term care homes. This is an increase of 7 outbreaks from the previous report.


Health Canada Approves COVID-19 Serological Test

  • Yesterday, following priority scientific review, Health Canada authorized the first COVID-19 serological test for use in Canada, the DiaSorin LIAISON®. Canadian laboratories will use the test to detect antibodies specific to COVID-19.
  • Serological testing will contribute to a better understanding of whether people who have been infected by COVID-19 are immune to the virus. Further research will also support understanding of the relationship between positive antibody tests and protection against re-infection.
  • Under the leadership of Canada’s COVID-19 Immunity Task Force, at least one million Canadian blood samples will be collected and tested over the next two years to track the virus in the general population and in specific groups at greater risk of having been infected, including health care workers and the elderly.
  • Understanding the scope and scale of COVID-19 infections across the country is key to managing the epidemic over the coming months. This understanding will help inform public health decisions to protect the health of Canadians.

Additional Aid for Seniors during COVID-19

  • The Canadian government announced yesterday a $2.5B plan to provide a one-time payment of up to $500 for eligible seniors to offset any increased living expenses they have incurred as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Prime Minister Trudeau said the outbreak and spread of COVID-19 has "exposed some uncomfortable truths about our society, including how we care for seniors in Canada." He indicated that in the coming months the federal government will have more to say in conjunction with the provinces when it comes to finding a more lasting solution.

Reopening of International Borders

  • The Prime Minister hinted yesterday that Canada is in no rush to ease travel restrictions to allow for non-essential travel into Canada from the United States. He noted that "we're going to be very, very careful about reopening any international travel, including with the United States, before we feel that it is time." The current agreement restricting Canada-US border crossings expires on May 21.


Stage One of Reopening Ontario's Economy

  • Speaking to reporters yesterday, Premier Ford said Ontario will "hit stage one" this Thursday of the province's three-stage framework for reopening the economy. "On Thursday, we will share more good news," Ford said, adding the announcement could see the reopening of more seasonal businesses, low-risk workplaces, essential services and even increasing social gatherings from five to ten people.
  • However, Dr. Williams said later in his daily briefing with the media, "we haven't yet," reached that stage and that the curve isn't falling as rapidly as he'd like. He further said, "we haven't had all those things come together where we say now we're ready to enter stage one. I think we're getting closer but if it was already there, I would have already recommended it." The Chief Medical Officer of Health also said that limiting gatherings to five has been effective in helping to curb the spread of COVID-19 and that allowing "wider connectivity" is still under consideration.
  • The Premier's Office later clarified that the Premier would be providing details about stage 1 on Thursday versus saying that Ontario had reached stage 1.

Approaches to Testing

  • Premier Ford noted that while there have been "some bumps in the road," he is pleased by the pace of COVID-19 testing and praised those public health officials whom he had earlier criticized.
  • While the Premier indicated that he would like to see "random" testing for COVID-19, Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Williams, later said that he wants to see careful testing driven by reasons to do so.
  • Dr. Williams also said that 70% of residents and staff in long-term care homes (LTC) have been tested for COVID-19 (some tests still have to be processed) and he expects the province will meet its target of testing everyone in LTC by this Friday.

Declaration of Emergency Extended While Ontario Gradually Reopens the Economy

  • Passed during a special sitting of the Ontario Legislature yesterday, the Declaration of Emergency has been extended until June 2. This declaration will allow Ontario to continue to enforce current emergency orders, such as restricting retirement and long-term care home employees from working in more than one facility and prohibiting events and gatherings of more than five people.
  • The Ontario Legislature also passed the COVID-19 Response and Reforms to Modernize Ontario Act, 2020, which will support businesses and other organizations in practising physical distancing by:
    • Providing authority to allow school board trustees to meet virtually.
    • Enabling corporations to hold meetings virtually and extend the time period in which annual meetings must be held.
    • Allowing designations of a beneficiary to be provided electronically for Retirement Savings Plans, Retirement Income Funds, Locked-in Retirement Accounts, Life Income Funds and Tax-Free Savings Accounts.
    • Allowing electronic filing of business registration documents.
    • Allowing for remotely commissioning or notarizing a document.
    • Extending, on a one-time basis for 2020, the legislated four-year period during which a Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) election is mandated to be held to give more time to support remote voting.

Ontario Takes Steps to Better Protect Long-Term Care Residents and Staff

  • The Ontario government has adopted an emergency order allowing the province to issue a mandatory management order for a long-term care home struggling to deal with a COVID-19 outbreak. This order would support the use of rapid, immediate and effective management alternatives to protect residents and staff within a home. The manager could be any person, including a corporation or a hospital.
  • A long-term care home may require management assistance if they face challenges like a high number of cases among residents or staff, a high number of deaths, an outbreak that has not yet been resolved, significant staffing issues or outstanding requirements from infection prevention and control assessments. Decisions regarding when and where to assign additional management support will be made on a case-by-case basis.

Protecting Ontario's Children with COVID-19

  • Today, Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health, issued a statement about multisystem inflammatory vasculitis, which appears to be similar to Kawasaki Syndrome.
  • Recent reports in Canada and internationally indicate that there may be an increase in multisystem inflammatory vasculitis, a rare but serious multisystem inflammatory illness that impacts children who have been diagnosed with COVID-19.
  • While the link between this inflammatory illness and COVID-19 is not confirmed at this time, the province is taking immediate action to better monitor this emerging issue.
  • In consultation with Dr. David Williams the province is  updating the case definition of COVID-19 to include multisystem inflammatory vasculitis as an atypical presentation in children.
  • Some of the symptoms associated with this illness include persistent fever, abdominal pain, gastrointestinal symptoms, including nausea, vomiting and diarrhea, as well as rash. Parents should contact their health care providers immediately if their children are having these symptoms.


  • To aid businesses in maintaining safety practices upon opening, the City of Belleville has made signage available for printing. Those interested can download the physical distancing and/or handshake-free signage from the City’s website, and post them in their business to remind customers of these safety practices.

  • Municipalities are reminding residents to shop local whenever possible to help support the local businesses in our community during this challenging time. The County of Prince Edward has also shared some ideas on how to enjoy The County from the comfort of your couch. Since travelling to The County is not recommended, consider having your favourite restaurant or shop delivered. Or get a little County magic through their Instagram feed - they're hosting weekly 'takeovers' with makers, shakers, bakers and more. Follow @VisitTheCounty for details.

  • Bancroft Mayor Paul Jenkins issued a message yesterday encouraging residents to shop local and support non-profit organizations. His message also requested that all travellers entering North Hastings or who leave and return to North Hastings self-isolate for two weeks to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission.

  • The Municipality of Centre Hastings reminds all local businesses and support services that Hastings County has created a map that shows businesses that are open during the pandemic. Businesses are encouraged to put their information and current services on the map to help the community find and support them.

  • The United Way HPE has created a condensed list of essential services available across HPE; community members can also visit Volunteer and Information Quinte at or or call 211 simply by dialing 211 from your phone.

Public Health

  • Dr. Ethan Toumishey hosts our weekly Facebook Live event tomorrow, Thursday, May 14 at 2 pm. The broadcast will feature a local COVID-19 update, responses to frequently asked questions, and the opportunity to address questions live to Dr. Toumishey. To participate in the live event, go to the Hastings Prince Edward Public Health Facebook page,, at 2 pm tomorrow. If you have any questions for Dr. Toumishey, please email them in advance or share them directly during the broadcast by commenting on the video.

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