This article was last updated on Wednesday at 3:42 p.m.
- Per today's government report, there are 4,156 new cases in Ontario, for a total of 398,835 since the pandemic began; 1,877 people are in hospital, 642 of them in intensive care, and 442 on ventilators. To date, 7,610 people have died.
- According to data from the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, there are 41 outbreaks in long-term-care facilities, 19 confirmed active cases of positive residents, and 131 confirmed active cases of positive staff. To date, there have been 3,755 confirmed resident deaths and 11 confirmed staff deaths.
- Per the government's report on Ontario’s vaccination program, as of 8 p.m. yesterday, Ontario has administered 112,817 new doses of COVID-19 vaccines, for a total of 3,422,974 since December 2020. 2,748,563 people have received only one dose, and 337,206 people have received both doses.
- Yesterday, the Ontario government announced that it will be rolling out vaccines to "hot spot" regions across the province as part of Phase Two of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan. According to a statement released by the government, through this initiative, 114 highly impacted neighbourhoods, as identified by postal code, will be reached through mass immunization clinics, mobile teams and pop-up clinics. More details about Ontario’s revised Phase 2 vaccination plan can be found on TVO.org.
- In a letter published Wednesday, Toronto Councillor Josh Matlow (Ward 12 Toronto-St. Paul’s) along with a group of doctors, epidemiologists and researchers, note that allowing everybody in Ontario to pre-register for COVID-19 vaccination now could help the province with its supply issues as well as overcome any vaccine hesitancy, reports the Toronto Star.
- The Toronto Star reports that Ottawa is providing $525.2 million to help Ontario schools cover COVID-19 costs such as improving ventilation or boosting broadband — with the provincial government pitching in an additional $131.3 million.
- A Quebec woman is the first in Canada to develop a blood clot after being vaccinated with the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, reports CP24. The Quebec health ministry and Public Health Agency of Canada reported the event connected to the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine Tuesday.
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Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area
- According to data as of April 13, there are 1,332 new cases in Toronto, for a total of 127,769 since the pandemic began; 730 of them are in hospital (90 new). In total, 2,878 people have died (eight new).
To date, 804,008 COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered in Toronto. According to a statement from the City, Toronto is the first health region in Ontario to administer more than 800,000 doses of vaccine.
10,000 COVID-19 vaccine appointments that were scheduled to take place at two clinics in Scarborough between Wednesday and Monday are now being cancelled due to a lack of supply, reports CP24. The Scarborough Health Network confirmed the cancellations in an email to CP24 Tuesday evening.
The University Health Network is pausing COVID-19 vaccine registration for people between 18 and 49 in three hot spots because of supply issues, reports CTV News. The UHN said Monday that people between those ages who live in the M5V, M6E and M6H postal codes could register for their first dose of the vaccine. A day later, UHN was forced to pause registration after they received 21,000 applications.
Approximately 15,000 people aged 18 and older are expected to be vaccinated at a new pop-up clinic in North Etobicoke over the next three weeks, reports CP24. A large pop-up immunization clinic has been set up at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, located near Finch Avenue and Highway 427 in North Etobicoke, where staff will begin inoculating residents in the community starting this week.
The Toronto Star reports that, with variants out of control, some experts are warning that parents in hotspot areas should be pulling their kids from daycare if they have the means to do so. In Toronto, there are currently 42 active outbreaks in child-care settings, though the city has more than 1,000 licensed facilities, according to Toronto Public Health. “As cases continue to rise in the community, it is not surprising that there has been an increase in cases in childcare centres, as these settings often reflect what is happening in the community,” associate medical officer of health, Vinita Dubey, said in an email to the Star.
The chief of staff at Mackenzie Health in York Region has issued an urgent call to doctors to be on the ready to pitch in with additional duties in order to help avert a “total collapse” of the health care system due to COVID-19, reports CP24.
As the Hamilton Spectator reports, some educational assistants will be heading back to in-person classes next week to support students with complex needs who can't learn remotely. The president of the Canadian Office and Professional Employees Union, which mainly represents EAs, says some members are able to work remotely, causing a divide. One EA tells the paper that working with some students makes physical distancing and the proper use of PPE impossible. What's more, many EAs will be returning to work before they've been able to receive COVID-19 vaccines.
In the fall, Hamilton public health officials refused to name the basketball club that as the setting of a COVID-19 outbreak, saying there was no risk to the public and therefore no need. They also cited unspecific privacy concerns. Schools, hospital units, businesses and long-term care homes are regularly named as the sites of outbreaks. The Spectator reports that reporters obtained internal emails showing public health staff debated making the name public. Now, they still argue the name, which the paper found to be Lincoln Prep, should be private.
Hamilton Health Sciences' medical director of infection prevention and control, Dr. Dominic Mertz, has broken down just how a COVID-19 spread through a local hospital causing five outbreaks in December. As CBC Hamilton reports, he used graphics to show how cases grew and the virus moved between staff and patients. Mertz said the examples show the best way to prevent spread would be to avoid moving staff and beds between units.
- As of April 12, Indigenous Services Canada is aware of 704 active cases of COVID-19 in First Nation communities across Canada. They are also reporting 299 COVID-19 related deaths in total, across all First Nation reserves in Canada. To date, Ontario First Nation communities have had a total of 1,729 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.
- Public Health Sudbury and Districts is reporting one new death in Sudbury, bringing the total to 24 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic. The health unit is also reporting a potential low-risk exposure at the Toys R Us on Marcus Drive between April 5 and 7. The health unit is asking people to self-monitor for symptoms and get tested if symptoms develop.
- The North Bay Parry Sound Health Unit is reporting a positive case at Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Elementary School. The Grade 7 and 8 cohort and anyone who boarded the 52 Allouette Bus Lines route are being asked to self-isolate. Bus route 52 also serves other students from White Woods Public School and Northern Secondary School. Currently, an outbreak hasn't been declared.
- Special education workers who are 18 and older are eligible to book an appointment with the North Bay Parry Sound Health Unit. Appointments can be booked at 1-800-563-2808, but online booking is not yet available to this group.
- Northwestern Health Unit Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Kit Young Hoon, expressed concern over a rising number of COVID-19 cases in Emo and Sioux Lookout, and is urging residents to adhere to stay-at-home orders, TBNewswatch reports.
- Last night Thunder Bay city council voted to support a resolution opposing Ontario’s decision to amalgamate the province’s 34 public health units, TBNewswatch reports.
- A documentary filmmaker in Thunder Bay has released a film about the impact of the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic in the city, CBC Thunder Bay reports.
- Kingston-area hospitals are preparing to see additional COVID-19 patients, including some who have been flown in from hospitals outside the region, Global News reports. Kingston General Hospital, for instance, has upped its number of intensive and critical care beds.
- All vaccination appointments at Kingston’s INVISTA Centre are booked until mid-May, Global News reports. Vaccinations are being offered at the INVISTA clinic to those 60 years and up, those with higher-risk health issues, and those living in congregate care settings.
- Ottawa Public Health reported 194 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, which was down from a three-day high, including with 348 cases confirmed on Monday, CTV News reports.
- Some pharmacies in the Lanark, Leeds, and Grenville public health district are now booking vaccination appointments for people ages 55 years and older, Lake 88.1 reports. Residents can contact the pharmacies directly to book.
- Roughly 80 of 700 workers at a chicken processing plant in London have tested positive for COVID-19, prompting a two-week shutdown at the plant, the London Free Press reports.
- Ontario Police College staff and students are being prioritized for receiving COVID-19 vaccinations, the London Free Press reports. The college experienced an outbreak of the virus last month. It's near Aylmer, whose postal code has been classified by the province as a hot zone for the virus.
- A Chatham-Kent councillor wants the provincial government to lift COVID-19 lockdown restrictions in the municipality because of the area's low case count, the Chatham Daily News reports.
- Huron-Perth's medical officer of health tells the Stratford Beacon Herald that a provincial decision to focus on delivering COVID-19 vaccinations in virus hot spots is one of the reasons why there is a local slowdown in vaccinations. As of today, the region has 40 active cases of the virus, according to the public health unit.
- The Thames Valley District School Board has expanded its asymptomatic COVID-19 screening to students and children in childcare, the Woodstock Sentinel-Review reports.
- Oxford County paramedics have launched a rapid testing program that targets students but is also open to others who might need it, the Woodstock Sentinel-Review reports.
- A COVID-19 outbreak has been declared at St. Mary's General Hospital in Kitchener, CTV Kitchener reports.