TORONTO, ONT. —
Owners of a Barrie, Ont., long-term care home plan to defend themselves against a class-action lawsuit alleging they failed to protect residents from a COVID-19 outbreak.
Roberta Place and Jarlette Inc. are named as defendants in the proposed class action.
The notice of intent was served to lawyers representing residents’ families on Friday.
An unproven statement of claim filed to the Ontario Superior Court of Justice last week alleges Roberta Place failed to take basic measures to protect residents against COVID-19.
An outbreak at the Barrie home driven by a more infectious variant of the virus has infected nearly all residents in the home and killed 69 since Jan. 8.
The court document alleges that the facility failed to separate residents infected with COVID-19 from those who didn’t have the virus, among other allegations.
As BC COVID Cases Rise, Health Officials Say Better Days Are Ahead – Toronto Star
Despite rising COVID-19 cases, especially in Metro Vancouver, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry didn’t announce new measures to curb the spread of the virus in a briefing today.
Henry urged British Columbians to continue to stay home when sick, wear a mask in public spaces and not socialize outside their households — public health orders that have been in place for nearly five months.
“It is concerning that we’re seeing an increase in our per-cent positivity and in our weekly average, particularly in the Lower Mainland,” she said.
“We know what to do to manage.”
The province need only stay the course to lower transmission as it continues to roll out vaccines to the most vulnerable to serious illness, she said.
But recent data shows the number of people infected is beginning to climb again after a slow decline. Earlier this month, the province was reporting about 450 new COVID-19 cases each day.
On Thursday, the province reported 617 new cases. Today, Henry said 559 new cases had been identified.
And the rolling seven-day average of new daily cases has surpassed 500 for the first time since early January.
Recent polling also suggests British Columbians are less likely to consistently follow COVID-19 guidelines than people in other provinces.
Concerns have also increased after seven schools reported students and staff had been exposed to COVID-19 variants that are believed to be more easily transmitted and potentially more likely to cause serious illness.
Education Minister Jennifer Whiteside acknowledged the issue in a briefing Monday.
“I can appreciate the anxiety,” she said. But she added that testing has shown the variants are not being spread within schools.
Henry said the province is testing all positive cases for evidence of a variant, and genomic sequencing has been ramped up to confirm the extent of variants in the community.
“We are paying extra attention, so we better understand how and where these are spreading,” she said.
“We’re learning about the impacts of these variants of concern,” Henry said. “But we know what we have to do to manage it.”
Henry said there are signs the province’s vaccination effort has saved lives, particularly in long-term care.
More than 220,000 people have been vaccinated, and at least 55,057 of those have had two doses.
The province reported one death due to COVID-19 today, an individual in assisted living.
There have been no new cases or deaths in long-term care in the last 24 hours, and 92 per cent of residents have had their first dose of the vaccine, Henry said.
Outbreaks in long-term care have also dropped from almost 60 in December to 12. There are five outbreaks in assisted living facilities.
On Monday the province will announce the plan for vaccinating seniors over 80 living in the community, Henry said, which will begin shortly.
“We are in a period of vaccine hope and pandemic reality,” she said.
21K vaccinations booked, thousands left frustrated by technical issues around Alberta's rollout – CTV Toronto
Registration opened Wednesday morning for Alberta seniors to book vaccination appointments, but the system crashed within minutes, leaving many frustrated.
“As anticipated, we are experiencing very high volumes with the AHS COVID-19 immunization booking tool,” officials wrote on social media.
“The tool remains live. If you are having trouble accessing the site, please try again shortly. Thank you for your patience.”
Health Minister Tyler Shandro said on social media he was “disappointed that the launch of the vaccine booking tool today did not go more smoothly.”
“At launch, more than 150,000 users attempted to visit the site, causing a number of technical issues,” he wrote.
To fix the problems, Shandro said network capacity had been added to 10 servers and additional staff has been brought in to answer Health Link calls.
As of 1 p.m. Wednesday, Shandro said 21,000 appointments had been booked.
All Albertans age 75 and older — including those who will turn 75 this year — can book appointments by calling Health Link (811) or using and an online portal to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
Anyone born in 1946 or earlier is eligible as part of Phase 1B of the province’s vaccination plan rollout. First Nations and Metis who are age 65 or older are also eligible. Vaccines will be provided in two doses, given five to six weeks apart.
There will be 58 sites set up to deliver vaccinations, Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said on Tuesday.
Officials have said the first appointments will be available as early as 11 a.m. on Wednesday.
Only Two New COVID-19 Cases In N.B. – 91.9 The Bend
New Brunswick is reporting only two new cases of COVID-19 today (February 24).
Public Health says one case in the Moncton Zone 1 region involves someone in their 50s.
The case is under investigation and the individual is said to be self-isolating.
The other case is someone in their 70s in the Edmundston Zone 4 region.
The individual is a staff member at Manoir Belle Vue and is reportedly self-isolating.
Public Health says 13 people have recovered from the virus since Tuesday which has lowered the number of active cases to 64.
Two patients are in hospital and one is in the ICU.
There have been 26 COVID-related deaths in the province.
On Tuesday, 797 tests were conducted.
All zones remain in the Orange level under the province’s mandatory order.
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