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COVID-19 in Ottawa Oct. 18, 2020

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OTTAWA —
Good morning. Here is the latest news on COVID-19 and its impact on Ottawa.

Fast Facts:

  • Ottawa sees a slight drop in COVID-19 cases, with 70 new cases on Saturday
  • Young Ottawa residents account for half of Ottawa’s monthly COVID-19 case record
  • COVID-19 measures need to target the root cause of transmission: Dr. Etches
  • Resident of Hawkesbury long-term care home dies due to COVID-19
  • Eastern Ontario Health Unit “strongly recommending” no trick-or-treating on Halloween

Testing:

Who should get a test?

Ottawa Public Health says there are four reasons to seek testing for COVID-19:

  • You are showing COVID-19 symptoms. OR
  • You have been exposed to a confirmed case of the virus, as informed by Ottawa Public Health or exposure notification through the COVID Alert app. OR
  • You are a resident or work in a setting that has a COVID-19 outbreak, as identified and informed by Ottawa Public Health. OR
  • You are eligible for testing as part of a targeted testing initiative directed by the Ministry of Health or the Ministry of Long-Term Care.

Where to get tested for COVID-19 in Ottawa:

The COVID-19 assessment centre at 151 Brewer Way is open seven days a week from 8:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Appointments are required in most cases but LIMITED walk-up capacity is available.

To book a test for an adult, click here.

CHEO Assessment Centre at Brewer Arena – 151 Brewer Way is open seven days a week from 8:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Testing is available by appointment only.

To book a test for a child under the age of 18, click here.

The COVID-19 care clinic at 595 Moodie Dr. is open from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday to Friday for people with escalating symptoms and in need of medical attention.

To book an appointment, click here. 

The COVID-19 care clinic at 1485 Heron Rd. is open from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday to Friday for people with escalating symptoms and in need of medical attention.

To book an appointment, click here.

The COVID-19 drive-thru assessment centre at 300 Coventry Road is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

 

COVID-19 screening tool:

The COVID-19 screening tool for students heading back to in-person classes can be found here.

Symptoms:

Classic Symptoms: fever, new or worsening cough, shortness of breath

Other symptoms: sore throat, difficulty swallow, new loss of taste or smell, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, pneumonia, new or unexplained runny nose or nasal congestion

Less common symptoms: unexplained fatigue, muscle aches, headache, delirium, chills, red/inflamed eyes, croup

Ottawa Public Health reported 70 new cases of COVID-19 in Ottawa on Saturday, while the seven-day average dropped compared to the same period last week.

No new deaths were reported on Saturday.

Since the first case of COVID-19 on March 11, there have been 5,969 laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ottawa, including 301 deaths.

From Oct. 11 to 17 inclusive, Ottawa saw an average of 85 new COVID-19 cases per day, down from an average of 106 cases per day from Oct. 4-10.

Ottawa set a new record for COVID-19 cases in a single month just 16 days into October, with people under the age of 30 accounting for 48 per cent of all new cases of the virus.

Ottawa Public Health has reported 1,581 laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 since Oct. 1. In September, there were 1,413 laboratory-confirmed cases of novel coronavirus in Ottawa.

Statistics available on Ottawa Public Health’s COVID-19 dashboard shows 756 of the 1,581 laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 this month involve residents under the age of 30.

There have been 393 cases involving residents ages 20 to 29, a total of 234 cases with residents ages 10 to 19, and 129 cases of COVID-19 involving residents under the age of 10.

Ottawa’s medical officer of health suggests the 28-day shutdown of indoor dining at bars and restaurants and the closing of gyms and movie theatres is a chance to learn more about COVID-19 transmission and how to stop it.

On Oct. 10, the Ontario Government moved Ottawa, Toronto and Peel Region to a modified Stage 2, closing indoor dining at restaurants and bars, movie theatres and gyms for at least 28 days.

CTV News at Six anchor Stefan Keyes asked Dr. Vera Etches Saturday evening if there is any data to suggest the new restrictions have helped reduce COVID-19 transmission in the community.

“I think we need more time. The infections that are being reported now really relate to transmission that happened a couple of weeks ago. So it’s too early to judge the impact of the restrictions,” said Dr. Etches.

“I can tell you there’s lots of thinking about how to target the root of the transmission of the virus and try to keep businesses from being affected as negatively. The root always is what brings us close together, less than two metres away from someone when we’re not wearing a mask indoors. So if we can avoid those kinds of activities with people outside our household that will make a difference.”

The medical officer of health was asked during CTV News at Six Saturday evening if there was a data threshold that could trigger an extension of the COVID-19 restrictions for bars, restaurants, gyms, indoor sports and movie theatres.

“I think we’re still wide open on all of the possibilities of what to do next, in conversation with the province. We want to minimize hospitalizations and deaths, and we certainly are seeing a lot of outbreaks start up because of the level of COVID in our community,” said Dr. Etches.

“We need to bring the level down. We know we need to tackle where transmission is happening and what the biggest contributions are, so it’s not as simple as looking at an extension or not. We want to learn from this period about what the impact is.”

A resident at a long-term care home in Hawkesbury has died due to COVID-19.

The United Counties of Prescott and Russell (UCPR) announced the first death related to COVID-19 at the Prescott and Russell Residence on Saturday evening.

“The UCPR extends its sincere sympathies to the family of the resident,” said the UCPR in a statement.”

A total of 35 positive cases of COVID-19 were reported at the long-term care home on Oct. 14, including 27 residents.

Ghosts, goblins and super heroes in Alexandria, Cornwall, Casselman, Hawkesbury, Rockland and other areas of eastern Ontario are being asked to stay home on Halloween night to help limit the spread of COVID-19.

The Eastern Ontario Health Unit says due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and a recent increase in cases, it’s “strongly recommending” residents avoid traditional ways of celebrating Halloween, including no trick-or-treating.

In a statement, the health unit says going out trick-or-treating or handing out treats increases your family’s risk of getting or spreading COVID-19 because it exposes you to others.

Ottawa Halloween

Source: – CTV News Ottawa

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Stuck in a food rut? Why you need break out of it – The Globe and Mail

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Try cruciferous vegetables (for example, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, bok choy), which offer phytochemicals with anti-cancer properties.

iStockPhoto / Getty Images

Eating the same go-to meals week after week is easy and convenient. It saves time on meal planning and it makes calorie tracking a breeze.

Sticking to a limited menu can get boring, though, which can prompt you to seek out extra snacks and treats. Worse, it can undermine your nutrient intake, and possibly your health.

The good news: adding new foods to your meal plan can combat menu fatigue and provide vitamins, minerals and protective phytochemicals your diet might be missing.

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Why variety matters

A varied diet, long considered a key component of healthy eating, means eating foods across all food groups. It also means diversifying your choices within food groups.

Researchers define a diverse diet as one that includes at least five food groups including fruits, vegetables, grains, dairy and proteins.

Studies have tied greater dietary diversity to a lower risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, asthma, depression and anxiety. It may also have cognitive benefits for older adults.

Eating a variety of fruits and vegetables has been found to be especially important maintaining heart health.

A varied diet is good for your gut, too. Including a mix of foods that contain probiotic bacteria, fermentable fibres and polyphenols helps maintain a diverse community of beneficial gut microbes.

If you eat similar meals day in and day out, consider the following suggestions to infuse more variety – and nutrients – in your diet, food group by food group.

Vegetables

Try cruciferous vegetables (for example, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, bok choy), which offer phytochemicals with anti-cancer properties. Enjoy them cooked or raw added to salads.

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Include bright-orange vegetables, packed with beta-carotene, in your regular diet (such as carrots, sweet potato, pumpkin, butternut squash). Beta-carotene supports a healthy immune system and is thought to protect against cardiovascular disease.

Add interest to meals by varying how you prepare vegetables. Sauté chopped Swiss chard, spinach or kale, for example, with garlic and chili flakes. Or, roast carrots and parsnips with a spice blend such as curry powder, harissa or ras el hanout (my favourite).

Fruit

Berries are an exceptional source of brain-friendly flavonoids called anthocyanins.

Enjoy fruit that’s in season as well. Apples and pears are good sources of pectin, a prebiotic fibre that helps fuel the growth of good gut bacteria.

In the winter months, reach for citrus fruit to increase your intake of vitamin C and flavanones, a type of flavonoid shown to protect brain cells, strengthen blood vessels and reduce inflammation.

Whole grains

Expand your grain menu beyond bread. Add raw large-flake oats to smoothies or soak them overnight for an easy breakfast. Cook a batch of farro or freekeh, nutrient-rich whole grains high in fibre and protein, to add to grain bowls, green salads, roasted vegetables, chili and soups.

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Switch up oatmeal by making porridge with other grains such as quinoa, millet, teff or amaranth.

Proteins

Think beyond chicken, salmon and lean meat, as nutritious as they are. You’ll also get muscle-building protein from beans and lentils, along with lots of folate and fibre, which animal proteins lack.

Add a variety of beans to your next chili. Make hummus from chickpeas, white beans or black beans.

If your usual snack is a handful of almonds, vary it up to get different nutrient profiles. Try walnuts for omega-3s, pistachios for extra vitamin B6 or pumpkin seeds for extra magnesium.

To increase calcium, include protein from dairy or dairy alternatives such as pea milk or soy milk. There’s no reason why Greek yogurt can’t sub in for turkey at lunch.

Try kefir, a fermented milk beverage, which delivers protein, vitamins and minerals, and probiotic bacteria. Use it for overnight oats and smoothies or over granola.

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Leslie Beck, a Toronto-based private practice dietitian, is Director of Food and Nutrition at Medcan.

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COVID-19: New rules mandate medical masks for some spa, salon staff – London Free Press (Blogs)

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Article content continued

“As we learn more about the novel coronavirus, how it spreads and how it behaves, we are putting measures in place to protect the community and prevent the kind of outbreaks that have been seen in other parts of the province.”

The updated order, made under Ontario’s Health Protection and Promotion Act, includes the following rules for personal service businesses:

  • Staff must wear a medical-grade face mask and face shield while performing services or procedures that require a client to remove their mask. The medical-grade mask can be a surgical mask and does not have to be a particle-blocking N95 respirator. The previous order banned all services requiring clients to remove their masks.
  • Business owners must inform all staff about the increased risk of COVID-19 exposure when they’re completing a procedure that requires a client to remove their mask. This item did not appear in the first order.
  • Multi-participant steam rooms, saunas or whirlpools must close. The previous order shuttered all steam rooms, saunas and whirlpools.
  • Baths, hot tubs, floating pools or sensory deprivation pods intended for one person are permitted. The first order had required these facilities to close unless administered by a regulated health professional.
  • Oxygen bars must close.
  • All staff must wear face masks on the job.

The new rules take effect at 12:01 a.m. Thursday. There is no timeline on the duration of the public health order.

Failing to comply with the order can carry a fine of as much as $5,000 a day for individuals and $25,000 a day for businesses.

London and Middlesex County reported two new COVID-19 cases Tuesday, one in a person aged 20 to 29, the other in a person 80 or older.

The London-area has reported three deaths and 378 new COVID-19 cases since Sept. 1, including 230 cases this month. October’s case count is second only to April, the peak of the first wave.

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COVID-19 immunity wanes within weeks, U.K. study finds. Results suggest vaccine needed twice a year – National Post

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Article content continued

She added: “Seasonal coronaviruses that circulate every winter and cause common colds can reinfect people, after six to 12 months – and we suspect that the way that the body reacts to infection with this new coronavirus is rather similar to that.

“We don’t yet know what level of antibody is needed in a person’s blood to protect them from infection or reinfection from SARS-CoV-2, but of course that level is a crucial thing to begin to understand.”

Acquiring this collective immunity just by letting virus run through the population is not really an option

Tarik Jasarevic, spokesman for the World Health Organization

The findings suggested that even if a successful vaccine was developed, it might have to be administered as often as every six months, increasing the scale of the challenge ahead. However, researchers said vaccines could prove more powerful than natural immunity.

The study backs up findings from similar surveys in Germany which found the vast majority of people didn’t have COVID-19 antibodies, even in hotspots for the disease, and that antibodies might fade in those who do.

World Health Organization spokesman Tarik Jasarevic said that uncertainty over how long immunity would last and the fact most people had never had antibodies against the coronavirus in the first place showed the need to break transmission chains.

“Acquiring this collective immunity just by letting virus run through the population is not really an option,” he told a U.N. briefing in Geneva

Professor Graham Cooke, another Imperial infectious diseases expert, said: “The big picture here is that after the first wave, the great majority of the country still did not have evidence of protective immunity. So although we are seeing a decline in the proportion of people who are testing positive, we still have a great majority of people who are unlikely to have been exposed.

“So the need for a vaccine is still very large if you want to try and get a large level of protection in the population.”

Imperial’s study, based on a survey of 365,000 randomly selected adults, was released as a pre-print paper, and has not yet been peer-reviewed.

The rapid waning of antibodies did not necessarily have implications for the efficacy of vaccine candidates currently in clinical trials, Imperial’s Barclay said.

“A good vaccine may well be better than natural immunity,” she said.

With files from The Daily Telegraph

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