COVID-19: What you need to know for April 12

The latest coronavirus updates from across the province
By TVO.org staff - Published on Apr 12, 2021

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This article was last updated on Monday at 4:27 p.m.

Provincewide

  • Per today's government report, there are 4,401 new cases in Ontario, for a total of total of 391,009 since the pandemic began; 1,646 people are in hospital, 619 of them in intensive care, and 408 on ventilators. To date, 7,567 people have died.
  • According to data from the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, there are 41 outbreaks in long-term-care facilities, 24 confirmed active cases of positive residents, and 120 confirmed active cases of positive staff. To date, there have been 3,755 confirmed resident deaths and 11 confirmed staff deaths.
  • As of 2PM Friday, Ontario's publicly-funded schools were reporting 186 new school-related student cases (for a total of 11,264) 30 new staff cases (for a total of 2,482) and 1 new unspecified cases for a total of 1,163; 1,302 schools are reporting at least one case and schools have been closed.
  • Per the government's report on Ontario’s vaccination program, as of 8 p.m. yesterday, Ontario has administered 74,722 new doses of COVID-19 vaccines, for a total of 3,214,465 since December 2020. 2,547,627 people have received only one dose, and 333,419 people have received both doses.

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JMM COVID Graph
Data from the Province of Ontario; visualizations by John Michael McGrath.
JMM COVID Graph
Data from the Province of Ontario; visualizations by John Michael McGrath.
JMM COVID Graph
Data from the Province of Ontario; visualizations by John Michael McGrath.
  • The Ontario government has announced that it is increasing its capacity in its COVID-19 vaccine rollout with the addition of over 700 pharmacies across the province. These locations will start offering the AstraZeneca vaccine to individuals aged 55 and older throughout this week. This expansion will bring the total number of pharmacies offering the vaccine to over 1,400 locations and this number is expected to reach approximately 1,500 by the end of April. To find the nearest pharmacy offering vaccinations please visit: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/vaccine-locations.
  • CP24 reports that Ontario hospitals will start ramping down elective surgeries and non-urgent procedures today to ensure they have the capacity to treat more COVID-19 patients. Hospitals in northern Ontario are exempt from cancelling non-urgent procedures but a memo from Ontario Health on Thursday night said they should prepare to ramp down quickly in the near future.
  • The federal government is expecting Moderna to make good this week on a previously promised batch of 855,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses that were expected last week, reports CTV News. Those delayed doses, along with a little more than one million shots of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, make up the extent of Canada's expected vaccine deliveries this week.

Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area 

  • According to data as of April 11, there are 1,296 new cases in Toronto, for a total of 125,497 since the pandemic began; 632 of them are in hospital (44 new). In total, 2,867 people have died (five new).
  • On April 9, Toronto Public Health reported 1,304 new cases of COVID-19 in Toronto – the highest recorded daily increase during the pandemic.
  • The City of Toronto announced on April 9, that two City employees working respectively at City-run COVID-19 vaccination clinics at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre and the Scarborough Town Centre tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. According to a statement, the Metro Toronto Convention Centre clinic staff member who has tested positive was on-site at the clinic from April 2 to 5. The staff member from the Scarborough Town Centre clinic who has tested positive was on-site at the clinic from March 31 to April 2.
  • Today, the City of Toronto will open three additional City-operated COVID-19 immunization clinics at Cloverdale Mall (Etobicoke-Lakeshore), North Toronto Memorial Community Centre (Eglinton-Lawrence) and Carmine Stefano Community Centre (Humber River-Black Creek) to vaccinate eligible residents with confirmed vaccination appointments who are age 60 years or older or 50 years and older from COVID-19 hot spots.
  • An employee at a Canada Post mail processing plant in the Toronto's east end has died after contracting COVID-19, reports CTV News. An outbreak at the South Central sorting facility was declared on April 2. Jan Simpson, the national president of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW), said 13 workers at the Eastern Avenue located tested positive for COVID-19 over a two-week period, which triggered rapid testing at the facility.
  • Nearly six weeks after Toronto was greenlit to start vaccinating its homeless population, less than a quarter of shelter residents have received their first-dose vaccines, reports the Toronto Star. As of Friday morning, roughly 1,400 shelter residents had received their first dose, said Andrew Bond, medical director of Toronto’s Inner City Health Associates. Occupancy in Toronto’s homeless shelter system sat this week at around 5,800 people.

  • The Toronto Star reports that according to data released by ICES on Tuesday, the most vaccinated neighbourhood in Toronto, was Moore Park (M4T), where, 22.4 per cent of residents had received at least one shot, despite the rate of hospitalization and death due to COVID-19 being just 0.59 per 1,000 people. Jane and Finch (M3N), where more than half of the residents do not speak English as a first language, and where thousands of essential workers live, had the lowest vaccination rate. Only 5.5 per cent of people there were vaccinated. That neighbourhood also has a rate of 5.06 per 1,000 people for hospitalization and death due to COVID-19,

  • CBC Hamilton reports that while several public health units use COVID-19 vaccine waitlists, Hamilton's does not. In other jurisdictions, the waitlists are used to contact residents who couldn't register if shots are left over at the end of a session. In Haldimand-Norfolk, two to six people on each clinic's waitlists get jabs every day, contributing to a 0.1 per cent level of waste, the health unit says. Hamilton public health says its strategy is to only thaw enough vaccines to cover the number of people who register in a day. While it did not answer CBC's questions about leftover vaccines, the city's medical officer of health has said any leftover vaccine is administered the next day. Hamilton's waste level is 0.18 per cent.

  • On Sunday, the province announced 32 more pharmacies in Hamilton will be able to administer AstraZeneca vaccines to people over 55. This includes 11 pharmacies in the lower city, which had previously been excluded, the Hamilton Spectator reports.

  • While it's unclear who may face charges, Niagara Region and Niagara Regional Police officials tell the St. Catharines Standard they are investigating a large anti-lockdown protest that happened in St. Catharines on Saturday. Hundred of people attended and speakers shared false information about the pandemic and governments' response to it.

Indigenous

  • As of April 8, Indigenous Services Canada is aware of 629 active cases of COVID-19 in First Nation communities across Canada. They are also reporting 296 COVID-19 related deaths in total, across all First Nation reserves in Canada. To date, Ontario First Nation communities have had a total of 1,676 COVID-19 cases.
  • As of April 9, Indigenous Services Canada is aware of 614 communities across Canada with vaccinations underway. 274,018 doses have been administered. ISC reminds the urban Indigenous population that First Nations living off reserve, Inuit and Métis are or will receive COVID-19 vaccination through their provincial or territorial health services. ISC is aware of vaccinations already taking place in several urban centres, including Toronto, Montreal, Winnipeg, Ottawa, Whitehorse.

Northern

  • Greater Sudbury council approves $500,000 to fund repairs to St. Joseph's Villa long-term care home, CBC Sudbury reports. The care home had requested $1 million to repair its roof with other building improvements. The funding will make its way to St. Joseph's in 2022 and 2023, according to CBC.
  • Algoma Public Health declares an outbreak at Echo Bay Early Learning Centre on Sunday. The centre will be closed until at least April 26.
  • Two Sudbury pharmacies will begin to offer the AstraZeneca vaccines, the Sudbury Star reports. The Rexall on Bancroft Drive and the Shoppers Drug Mart at the New Sudbury Centre will now offer vaccines alongside Shoppers Drug Mart on Long Lake Road, Rexall pharmacy on Highway 69 North in Val Caron, and the Walden Family Drugstore in Lively.
  • The Rainbow District School Board will continue remote learning after the April break, the Sudbury Star reports. Remote learning resumes April 19 and will continue until further notice.
  • Several crew members aboard a cargo ship docked in Thunder Bay have tested positive for COVID-19, TBNewswatch reports. According to a statement from Canada Steamship Lines, “several” of the 25 crew members tested positive for the virus on April 8. The crew members are self-isolating at a local hotel.
  • The Northwestern Health Unit reported 13 new cases of COVID-19 over the weekend. On Saturday, the health unit issued a statement warning residents in Sioux Lookout about an increase in the number of positive COVID-19 test results in the area, where at least one variant of concern has been found.
  • The Thunder Bay District Health Unit also reported 13 new cases of COVID-19 over the weekend, though the health unit announced it will no longer be posting new data on Sunday, instead grouping that data into Monday’s numbers, TBNewswatch reports.
  • 90 per cent of staff at the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre have been vaccinated against COVID-19, according to TBNewswatch. There are currently 13 people hospitalized with COVID-19 in Thunder Bay, including 5 in the Intensive Care Unit.
  • Mayors of the five largest cities in northern Ontario are calling on the province to reconsider its 2019 plan to consolidate the province’s 34 health units into 10 regional agencies, TBNewswatch reports. Mayors in Thunder Bay, Sudbury, Sault Ste. Marie, North Bay, and Timmins signed the letter addressed to Premier Doug Ford.

Eastern

  • Kingston police gave out more than $30,000 in lockdown violation-related tickets by Saturday evening, Global News reports. On Friday, Global News also reported that Kingston closed Breakwater Park for ten days, after pictures posted on social media showed large gatherings there. (Outdoor gatherings are limited to five people).
  • Charges are expected after nearly 200 people gathered – mask-less – at the South Branch Bistro in Kemptville for a “mask burning party” on Thursday, the Ottawa Citizen reports. “My full expectation, given that bylaw, public health, LCBO and OPP were there documenting the event, is that charges will be laid,” said Nancy Peckford, the mayor of North Grenville.
  • Peterborough Public Health says that its vaccine supply for April is running low, just one week into the month, though the health unit has one of the highest vaccination rates in the province, Global News reports.
  • Hastings and Prince Edward Counties Health Unit has confirmed a seventh death in the region, according to Inquinte.ca. A second death was confirmed in the Kingston region on the weekend, Global News reports. There were 135 active cases in the Kingston region, as of Sunday.
  • Ontario’s pharmacy vaccine rollout is set to expand in coming days, with around 80 new locations being added in Ottawa, according to a tweet from Nepean MPP Lisa MacLeod. Another 50 locations have been added in other eastern Ontario locations, from Cornwall to Trenton to Deep River, CBC News reports.
  • Daily COVID-19 cases in Ottawa have hit another high, with the city reporting 370 cases on Sunday morning, which topped the record of 325, set just the day before, the Ottawa Citizen reports.

Southwestern

  • Politicians, community leaders and others are taking issue with a a Municipality of Essex councillor's online anti-Asian racism remark connected to COVID-19, CBC Windsor reports. The Essex County Chinese Association called the tweet "unacceptable," CTV Windsor reports.
  • This week, the list of pharmacies in London delivering the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine to people 55 and up is set to grow by 32 new locations as part of a provincial expansion of the program, the London Free Press reports. Previously, only two pharmacies in the city offered vaccinations.
  • The postal code for a London student neighbourhood has a nearly 29 per cent positive COVID-19 test rate — one of the highest rates in the province, the London Free Press reports.
  • Eleven schools with the Thames Valley District School Board have reported cases of COVID-19, CTV London reports.
  • Community groups in the Waterloo Region are using town hall meetings to tackle COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy, CTV Kitchener reports.
  • In Guelph, local businesses are pushing to stay open, CTV Kitchener reports.
  • In Simcoe on Saturday, hundreds of people gathered in a former Zellers store parking lot to protest the lockdown, the Simcoe Reformer reports.
  • A migrant worker advocacy group says a $10 million fund the province announced earlier this month to help farmers to establish COVID-19 workplace protections benefits business owners more than workers, the Simcoe Reformer reports. The fund is intended to help farmers protect their workers' health and safety, the province's agriculture minister says in a statement.
  • The Ontario government has begun a pilot to vaccinate migrant farm workers as soon as they arrive in the country, CBC Windsor reports.


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