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Gatherings restricted, schools closed: What's being done to fight COVID-19 – The Daily Courier

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Gatherings restricted, schools closed: What's being done to fight COVID-19 – The Daily Courier


The COVID-19 pandemic has affected every province and territory. Canada’s chief public health officer and her provincial counterparts are encouraging people to wash their hands, give each other space and wear a mask if they are sick or a homemade one if they believe they could have been exposed to the virus and are not showing any symptoms.

Ottawa has put money into health-care research and the economy. It has also put restrictions on international travel and is mandating 14-day quarantines for travellers returning to Canada to try to limit spread of the novel coronavirus.

The border with the U.S. has been closed to all non-essential traffic.

Classes are suspended or cancelled at schools throughout the country.

Each province and territory also has its own emergency measures to detect cases and prevent spread of the virus.

Here’s a look at some of the ways different jurisdictions are responding:

British Columbia

B.C. declared a provincial state of emergency on March 18, a day after announcing a public health emergency, and it has been extended to April 28.

The measure gives the province authority to take any action necessary to protect people and communities, including charging people who ignore public health orders.

The province has also prohibited reselling essential supplies such as food and cleaning material.

All parking fees at B.C. hospitals have been cancelled during the pandemic to ensure safer access for patients and staff.

Officials have prohibited gatherings of more than 50 people in one place, including restaurants, schools, places of worship, theatres, casinos, sports arenas and outdoor venues.

That has forced the cancellation of the annual TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival in June.

All provincial parks are also closed.

The Vancouver park board says cars are being banned from most roads in Stanley Park to give cyclists, walkers and joggers more room.

Officials have also issued fire restrictions as the wildfire season begins.

Alberta

Alberta declared a public health emergency on March 17.

The province has given law enforcement agencies full authority to enforce orders and issue fines for violations.

There are restrictions on mass gatherings of more than 15 people, both indoors and outdoors at places of worship, weddings or funerals. Any gathering must allow people to keep the two-metre distance from others.

All non-essential businesses have been ordered closed, including personal service providers, clothing stores and furniture stores.

Albertans are prohibited from attending public or private recreational and entertainment facilities. Restaurants have been ordered closed, except for takeout or delivery. Casinos are closed.

Vehicle access to provincial parks and public lands is prohibited to visitors.

Albertans who have been ordered to quarantine cannot leave their property for 14 days. And if they live in apartment buildings they are not allowed to use the elevators.

There’s also a new restriction on visitors at nursing homes, long-term care facilities and hospitals — although exceptions could be made if a child is in hospital or a woman is about to give birth.

Saskatchewan

Premier Scott Moe declared a provincial state of emergency on March 18.

It directs all orders from the chief medical health officer be followed and gives police the authority to enforce them.

Public gatherings are limited to no more than 10 people.

Nightclubs, bars and lounges are closed, but they are allowed to provide takeout food or alcohol.

Recreational and entertainment facilities are closed. Personal service providers such as tattoists, hairdressers, estheticians and relaxation masseuses cannot operate.

Dental, optometrist, chiropractic and podiatry clinics are closed — except for emergencies.

Saskatchewan has updated its public health orders to say long-term and personal care homes should ensure staff only work at one facility.

All employees at long-term care facilities are having their temperatures checked and are being monitored for COVID-19.

Health officials say there’s no evidence livestock or pets can be infected with or transmit COVID-19, but it hasn’t been ruled out. They suggest anyone with the virus avoid contact with animals, as well as people, until more information is available.

The Saskatchewan government is promising one-time emergency bursaries to post-secondary students whose studies and jobs have been affected the pandemic.

Manitoba

The Manitoba government declared a provincewide state of emergency on March 20.

The province has limited public gatherings to no more than 10 people.

That includes any indoor or outdoor spot, places of worship or family events such as weddings and funerals.

No visitors are allowed in long-term care facilities and hospitals, though exceptions may be made in hospitals for compassionate reasons.

Public events marking the province’s 150th birthday have been postponed and the long running Dauphin Countryfest is cancelled this year.

The province is instituting fines for people who don’t follow public safety orders during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Non-essential travel to the province’s north and to remote communities is being restricted to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

There are some exceptions, including for people who travel for medical care or work, people who share child custody, and people who deliver goods and services.

Non-essential businesses have been ordered to close. Salons, spas, bars and other establishments were closed as of April 1. Restaurants can remain open for takeout or delivery only.

The closures do not affect health-care facilities, government services and other institutions.

Bingo and gaming venues as well as wellness centres and gyms are closed.

The province is letting people hurt by the COVID-19 economic fallout avoid penalties and interest on some utility payments and property taxes. There’s also a freeze on all rent increases until at least May 31.

Ontario

Ontario has extended its state of emergency for another 28 days.

The order closes non-essential businesses and child-care centres until May 12.

Premier Doug Ford says Ontario’s schools will not re-open on May 4.

All business except those deemed essential have been shut down.

The province will allow curbside pick up and delivery of cannabis.

All industrial construction except for essential projects, such as hospitals, has been halted.

All bars and restaurants, except for takeout and delivery, have been closed.

Also closed are recreational facilities, public libraries, private schools, licensed child-care centres, movie theatres and concert venues.

Any public events of more than five people, including parades, events and services at places of worship, are prohibited, and provincial parks are closed.

The City of Toronto has also closed playgrounds, sports fields, off-leash dog parks, skateboard parks and picnic areas. Parking lots attached to parks are closed.

The province says it will also quadruple COVID-19 testing capacity to 16,000 by May 6.

On April 17 the province expanded eligibility for free emergency child care to include workers in developmental services, victim services, violence against women services, children’s aid societies, probation and parole officers and staff in homeless shelters. The program was initially set up for health-care workers, first responders and correctional officers.

Quebec

Quebec declared a public health emergency on March 13 and renewed it a week later.

The government has reduced non-priority services and prohibited indoor and outdoor gatherings.

All festivals, sporting and cultural events scheduled for this summer are cancelled or postponed.

Tennis Canada says the Rogers Cup women’s tennis tournament scheduled for Aug. 7 to 16 in Montreal will return to the city in August 2021.

Police set up checkpoints curtailing access to eight remote regions. All non-essential travel to much of cottage country north of Montreal, and to Charlevoix, northeast of Quebec City is also banned.

Quebec has prohibited non-essential visits to hospitals, residential and long-term care centres or between children in foster families and their biological families.

Designated clinics have been opened for anyone displaying COVID-19 symptoms.

To give retail employees a break, stores are closed on Sundays in April, with only pharmacies, gas stations, convenience stores and takeout restaurants remaining open on those days.

Montreal’s mayor has also declared a state of emergency to help authorities better manage the spread of COVID-19 among the city’s homeless.

On April 18, 125 military personnel with medical expertise geared up to deploy to long-term care homes in the Montreal area after Premier Francois Legault asked Ottawa for assistance. The homes have been especially hard hit by the pandemic. —

New Brunswick

A state of emergency was declared in New Brunswick on March 19.

Businesses serving food and beverages have been restricted to takeout and delivery. Lounges and clubs are forbidden from allowing customers to enter.

Customers are not allowed to enter retail businesses, unless they serve food, medication, fuel or other essential supplies.

Many health services — such as chiropractors, dentists and optometrists — are prohibited from seeing patients in person unless absolutely necessary.

No gatherings larger than 10 people are allowed and residents are urged to stay home as much as possible. They are also asked to delay non-essential errands.

Any unnecessary travel into New Brunswick is prohibited.

All playgrounds in the province are closed, but some public parks and walking trails remain open as long as physical distancing measures are followed.

Nova Scotia

The province of Nova Scotia declared a state of emergency on March 22 and it has been extended to April 19.

It set out a 14-day rule for self-isolation and self-quarantine for people returning from outside Canada.

All schools and daycares are closed. Long-term care facilities and care homes are closed to visitors.

Casinos have closed and no business is allowed to operate a video lottery terminal.

Restaurants are restricted to takeout and delivery service only. Drinking establishments are closed.

There are also restrictions on health professionals such as chiropractors and dentists.

Two mobile assessment centres have been established to do community-based testing.

Prince Edward Island

Premier Dennis King declared a public health emergency on March 16.

It included an order to Islanders to refrain from attending any public gatherings and a closure of libraries, child-care facilities, gyms and schools.

Hospitals have restricted visitors — although one visitor is allowed at a time to see patients in palliative care, intensive care, neonatal intensive care, obstetric and pediatric units.

All long-term care facilities continue to fully restrict visitors.

Measures also include fines for anyone who doesn’t comply with a direction to self-isolate.

The public health officer recommends people who are self-isolating stay on their own property when outside.

The government is working to open an out-patient clinic to allow for increased testing and to ease the load on hospitals.

Officials have also deferred provincial property tax and fee payments until the end of the year.

Newfoundland and Labrador

The province declared a public health emergency on March 18.

It includes the closure of most businesses — with the exception of grocery stores, pharmacies, gas stations and other stores considered essential.

Gatherings of more than 10 people are not allowed. That includes funerals and weddings.

Anyone arriving from outside the province is required to self-isolate for 14 days.

Health officials have the authority to restrict the rights and freedoms of people in a time of crisis. People who violate orders face fines.

Yukon

Yukon declared a state of emergency on March 27.

The government has placed enforcement officers at the Whitehorse airport and at its boundaries to get details of travellers’ self-isolation plans, their contact information and to look for any symptoms of COVID-19.

Yukon residents flying into Canada with COVID-19 symptoms must quarantine at their arrival destination, and those without symptoms are ordered to self-isolate for 14 days when they get home.

Yukon has asked everyone arriving in the territory, including mine workers, to self-isolate for 14 days.

Yukon beefed up its border control measure on April 17, giving enforcement officers the authority to deny non-essential travellers from entering.

The government has closed bars and limited social gatherings to 10 people or less.

Recreation facilities, libraries, museums and visitor centres are closed.

Long-term care facilities are closed to visitors and volunteers, while all non-urgent or routine services, including lab tests, X-rays, physiotherapy and occupational therapy are suspended.

All dentists must also suspend non-urgent treatment until further notice.

Northwest Territories

The Northwest Territories declared a public health emergency on March 18, which has now been upgraded to a state of emergency.

It requires anyone who arrives in the territory from outside its boundary to self-isolate for 14 days.

Travel through all points of entry into the territory — both air and road — is prohibited.

The orders exclude essential service workers such as medical professionals or emergency services.

The territory has asked that all indoor and outdoor gatherings be cancelled — regardless of size or number.

Many businesses, including tour operators, gyms, museums and theatres, have been ordered to close.

The government has said it will help Indigenous families who want to head out on the land as an alternative to physical distancing. It will provide a $2.6-million grant to help families buy the proper gear and supplies to head out to fishing and hunting camps.

Nunavut

Nunavut declared a public health emergency on March 20.

It has no known cases of COVID-19, but it has restrictions in place.

There is a mandatory 14-day self-isolation period at one of four locations in southern Canada for any resident that wants to return to Nunavut.

Critical employees who need to return to work must apply for an exemption.

All non-essential medical travel has been cancelled.

Public gatherings, including at playgrounds or parks and at religious, cultural or spiritual services is prohibited.

School staff in Iqaluit are working to ensure students in the capital of Nunavut don’t go hungry because of closed classrooms. They’re continuing to provide breakfasts to children in a way that follows physical distancing rules.

Sources: Provincial and territorial government websites

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 19, 2020

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Colon Cancer Rates Have Increased: How Can You Improve Your Gut Health?

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Colon Cancer Rates Have Increased: How Can You Improve Your Gut Health?

The majority of colon cancer cases are more common among older citizens. However, research has found that colorectal cancer rates have been rising in healthy people under 50. The rate has increased over the ten years. Medical professionals recommend screening from age 45. A colorectal screening test is done to ensure that the individual does not have any signs of cancer.

A study found that there has been a surge in colorectal cancer in younger generations and could become the dominant cause of cancer-related deaths by 2030. Since the risk is alarming, everyone needs to take their gut health seriously. Here are some things that people can do to improve their well-being.

Consider Hydrotherapy

Hydrotherapy is a type of colon cleanse that treats digestive issues such as constipation and bloating. Chronic constipation can lead to colon cancer, so it is vital to deal with the issue before it worsens. Colon hydrotherapy is offered at a few places, including a wellness colonic clinic in Toronto where the staff is committed to providing solutions for their clients’ digestive health.

Cleansing your colon can help improve digestion, relieve constipation, reduce gas, rejuvenate skin, and increase energy. The process involves flushing the colon with a large volume of water. It can be beneficial to speak to the professionals at the clinic and discuss your concerns with them. They will educate you about the process and answer any concerns you may have. The treatment can seem overwhelming but can also be helpful for your gut health.

Colon Cancer Rates Have Increased: How Can You Improve Your Gut Health?

 

Consume Sensibly

Your food intake plays a significant role in your gut health. If you have gut problems, it may be worthwhile to speak to a doctor and change your diet. You should also consider finding out if you have any food intolerance. There may be trigger foods such as oil or dairy that could be causing discomfort.

Even if you do not have any problems with your food consumption, it is never wrong to watch what you eat. Foods with probiotics or high fibre content can be good for you. Eating the right foods can improve your overall health too.

Stay Hydrated

Water almost seems like a magical drink sometimes. From skin problems to digestive issues, it can improve many situations. Consuming a good amount of water every day can balance good bacteria in the gut and promote your health. Hydration can also help your organs function properly and improve cognitive function.

Colon Cancer Rates Have Increased: How Can You Improve Your Gut Health?

Say Goodbye to Extreme Stress

It can be challenging to bid farewell to stress forever. However, chronic high levels of stress can impact your abdomen and your overall health. There is a connection between the brain and gut, and stress can cause your stomach to become anxious.

Long-term stress can trigger several gut problems such as indigestion, constipation, or diarrhea. Look for ways to reduce stress levels so that your gut can remain healthy.

Some health problems are inevitable with age, but you can do your best to stay healthy and deal with any issues you face. Prepare yourself to fight any disease beforehand, and your body will thank you.

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Biden’s vaccine pledge ups pressure on rich countries to give more

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Biden to send 20 million doses of U.S.-authorized vaccines abroad for first time

The United States on Thursday raised the pressure on other Group of Seven leaders to share their vaccine hoards to bring an end to the pandemic by pledging to donate 500 million doses of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine to the world’s poorest countries.

The largest ever vaccine donation by a single country will cost the United States $3.5 billion but Washington expects no quid pro quo or favours for the gift, a senior Biden administration official told reporters.

U.S. President Joe Biden‘s move, on the eve of a summit of the world’s richest democracies, is likely to prompt other leaders to stump up more vaccines, though even vast numbers of vaccines would still not be enough to inoculate all of the world’s poor.

G7 leaders want to vaccinate the world by the end of 2022 to try to halt the COVID-19 pandemic that has killed more than 3.9 million people and devastated the global economy.

A senior Biden administration official described the gesture as a “major step forward that will supercharge the global effort” with the aim of “bringing hope to every corner of the world.” “We really want to underscore that this is fundamentally about a singular objective of saving lives,” the official said, adding that Washington was not seeking favours in exchange for the doses.

Vaccination efforts so far are heavily correlated with wealth: the United States, Europe, Israel and Bahrain are far ahead of other countries. A total of 2.2 billion people have been vaccinated so far out of a world population of nearly 8 billion, based on Johns Hopkins University data.

U.S. drugmaker Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech have agreed to supply the U.S. with the vaccines, delivering 200 million doses in 2021 and 300 million doses in the first half of 2022.

The shots, which will be produced at Pfizer’s U.S. sites, will be supplied at a not-for-profit price.

“Our partnership with the U.S. government will help bring hundreds of millions of doses of our vaccine to the poorest countries around the world as quickly as possible,” said Pfizer Chief Executive Albert Bourla.

‘DROP IN THE BUCKET’

Anti-poverty campaign group Oxfam called for more to be done to increase global production of vaccines.

“Surely, these 500 million vaccine doses are welcome as they will help more than 250 million people, but that’s still a drop in the bucket compared to the need across the world,” said Niko Lusiani, Oxfam America’s vaccine lead.

“We need a transformation toward more distributed vaccine manufacturing so that qualified producers worldwide can produce billions more low-cost doses on their own terms, without intellectual property constraints,” he said in a statement.

Another issue, especially in some poor countries, is the infrastructure for transporting the vaccines which often have to be stored at very cold temperatures.

Biden has also backed calls for a waiver of some vaccine intellectual property rights but there is no international consensus yet on how to proceed.

The new vaccine donations come on top of 80 million doses Washington has already pledged to donate by the end of June. There is also $2 billion in funding earmarked for the COVAX programme led by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI), the White House said.

GAVI and the WHO welcomed the initiative.

Washington is also taking steps to support local production of COVID-19 vaccines in other countries, including through its Quad initiative with Japan, India and Australia.

(Reporting by Steve Holland in St. Ives, England, Andrea Shalal in Washington and Caroline Copley in Berlin; Writing by Guy Faulconbridge and Keith Weir;Editing by Leslie Adler, David Evans, Emelia Sithole-Matarise, Giles Elgood and Jane Merriman)

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Vaccines donated by the United States and China

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Gatherings restricted, schools closed: What's being done to fight COVID-19 – The Daily Courier

Both the United States and China have pledged large donations of COVID-19 vaccines to countries around the world. Washington has promised 80 million doses, three-quarters of which will be delivered via the international vaccine initiative COVAX, in what has been seen as an effort to counter China’s widening vaccine diplomacy. It began deliveries last week.

China had shipped vaccines to 66 countries in the form of aid, according to state news agency Xinhua. Beijing has not disclosed an overall figure for its donations but Reuters calculations based on publicly available data show at least 16.57 million doses have been delivered. China has also pledged to supply 10 million doses to COVAX.

VACCINES DONATED BY U.S. (plan for the first 25 mln):

Regional partners and priority recipients

COUNTRY/TERRITORY PLEDGED DELIVERED

Including Canada, Mexico, 1 mln to S.Korea in June

South Korea, West Bank and

Gaza, Ukraine, Kosovo,

Haiti, Georgia, Egypt,

Jordan, India, Iraq, Yemen,

United Nations

TOTAL 6 mln 1 mln

Allocations through COVAX

South and Central America

COUNTRY/TERRITORY PLEDGED DELIVERED

Brazil, Argentina, Colombia,

Costa Rica, Peru, Ecuador,

Paraguay, Bolivia,

Guatemala, El Salvador,

Honduras, Panama, Haiti,

Dominican Republic and other

Caribbean Community

(CARICOM) countries

TOTAL 6 mln

Asia

COUNTRY/TERRITORY PLEDGED DELIVERED

India, Nepal, Bangladesh,

Pakistan, Sri Lanka,

Afghanistan, Maldives,

Malaysia, Philippines,

Vietnam, Indonesia,

Thailand, Laos, Papua New

Guinea, Taiwan, and the

Pacific Islands

TOTAL 7 mln

Africa

COUNTRY/TERRITORY PLEDGED DELIVERED

To be selected in

coordination with the

African Union

TOTAL 5 mln

VACCINES DONATED BY CHINA (source – Reuters calculations and official data):

Asia Pacific

COUNTRY/TERRITORY PLEDGED DELIVERED

Afghanistan 400,000

Bangladesh Second batch of First batch of 500,000 delivered

600,000 on May 12

Brunei 52,000 in Feb

Cambodia 1.7 mln as of April 28

Kyrgyzstan 150,000 in March

Laos 300,000 in Feb

800,000 in late March

300,000 in late April

Maldives 200,000 in early March

Mongolia 300,000 in late February

Myanmar 500,000 in early May

Nepal 800,000 in late March

1 mln in early June

Pakistan 500,000 in early Feb

250,000 in Feb

500,000 in March

Philippines 600,000 in late Feb

400,000 in late March

Sri Lanka 600,000 at end March

500,000 in late May

Thailand 500,000 in May

500,000 in June

Timor-Leste 100,000 100,000 in early June

TOTAL 11.052 million

Africa

COUNTRY/TERRITORY PLEDGED DELIVERED

Angola 200,000 in late March

Algeria 200,000 200,000 in Feb

Botswana 200,000 in April

Cameroon 200,000 in April

Congo 100,000 100,000 in March

Egypt 600,000 in March

Ethiopia 300,000 in late March

Equatorial Guinea 100,000 in Feb

Guinea 200,000 in early March

Mozambique 200,000 in late Feb

Namibia 100,000 by early April

Niger 400,000 in late March

Sierra Leone 240,000 by late May

Togo 200,000 in April

Uganda 300,000

Zimbabwe 200,000 in Feb

200,000 in March

100,000 in May

TOTAL 3.74 million

South America

COUNTRY/TERRITORY PLEDGED DELIVERED

Bolivia 100,000 in late Feb

100,000 in late March

Venezuela 500,000 in early March

TOTAL 700,000

Europe & Middle East

COUNTRY/TERRITORY PLEDGED DELIVERED

Belarus 100,000 in Feb

300,000 in May

Georgia 100,000 at end April

Iran 250,000 at end February

Iraq 50,000 in early March

Montenegro 30,000 in early March

North Macedonia 100,000 in May

Syria 150,000 in late April

TOTAL 1.08 million

 

(Reporting by Roxanne Liu and Ryan Woo in Beijing and Cooper Inveen in Dakar; Additional reporting by MacDonald Dzirutwe in Harare, Asif Shahzad in Islamabad, Gopal Sharma in Kathmandu; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)

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