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New COVID-19 cases in Ontario surge to highest level in nearly five months – CTV Toronto



Ontario is reporting the highest number of new COVID-19 cases since early May. 

Health officials added 491 lab-confirmed cases on Sunday, the highest daily total since May 2 when 511 cases were confirmed.

The province also recorded two COVID-19-related deaths in the last 24-hour period as well as 289 cases which are now considered to be resolved.

Sunday’s report pushes the province’s lab-confirmed case count to 49,831, including 2,839 deaths and 42,796 recoveries.  

Right now, there are 4,196 active cases of the disease in Ontario.

The new cases represent an increase over Saturday’s total when 435 new infections were logged and mark the fourth straight day in which the province has recorded more than 400 new cases.

On Tuesday, Ontario Premier Doug Ford warned of a “more challenging” and “more complicated” second wave of COVID-19 as he announced the government’s first part of a fall preparedness plan.

Days later, the premier would impose stricter rules on restaurants and bars to control “outbreak clusters” of COVID-19 in the province. The new restrictions mean that all food and drink establishments can no longer sell alcohol after 11 p.m. and the consumption of alcohol on these premises will be prohibited after 12 a.m.

In a tweet published Sunday morning, Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott said that most of the new cases are in people under the age of 40.

According to the province’s daily epidemiologic summary, 236 of the new infections were reported in people between the ages of 20 and 39. That age group now accounts for 17,000 lab-confirmed infections, the most of any age group in Ontario.

Another 118 cases were reported in people between the ages of 40 and 59. Seventy-five cases were reported in people 19 years of age and younger and 51 cases were reported in people between the ages of 60 and 79.

Thirteen new cases were reported in people 80 years of age and older.

Where are the new COVID-19 cases?

Most of the new cases of COVID-19 in Ontario continue to be reported by just four regions.

There are 137 new cases in Toronto, 131 in Peel Region and 58 in both Ottawa and York Region.

At least five other public health units are also reporting new case numbers in the double digits, including Niagara, Halton and Waterloo.

The number of hospitalizations has also increased to 112, up from the 100 reported a day earlier. However, the ministry of health says that number will likely increase as approximately 35 Ontario hospitals did not report patient data on Sunday.

Of those 112 patients, 28 are being treated in an intensive care unit, 16 of which are breathing with the assistance of a ventilator.  

Update on COVID-19 testing in Ontario

Testing for COVID-19 in Ontario remains high with 42,509 tests completed since yesterday. A day earlier, the province would set a new record for most tests completed in a single day with 43,238 tests completed.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the province has processed more than 3.8 million tests for the disease.

There are 65,061 tests currently under investigation.

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Family Thanksgiving dinner was superspreading event in Renfrew County, health official says –



A family’s Thanksgiving gathering in Renfrew County is the source of an outbreak that health officials are still trying to trace, says the region’s medical officer of health.

Up to 20 people attended this family’s event in Ontario municipality northwest of Ottawa, medical officer of health Dr. Robert Cushman told CBC News. 

“Someone must have showed up to the event with COVID[-19], either they were asymptomatic or they didn’t pay attention to their symptoms,” he said. “And then it continued to spread.” 

Cushman said about a dozen cases have been linked to the dinner so far, and health officials are still counting.

As of its latest numbers Thursday, Renfrew County and District Health Unit reported 96 confirmed cases of COVID-19. The cases linked to this one family’s dinner party make up more than a tenth of the county’s total cases so far.

“One of the things that was interesting was there [were] seniors,” said Cushman. “Luckily there was no hospitalizations resulting from that.” 

Two teenagers also tested positive for COVID-19 linked to the gathering, and that had far-reaching effects, said Cushman.

We can try as much as we can, but somehow there’s a certain amount of disregard for what we’re saying.– Dr. Robert Cushman, Medical officer of health, Renfrew County and District Health Unit

“We had to do some very aggressive contact tracing and testing in their particular high school,” he said.

As a result, about 70 students missed at least a week of classes. They were swabbed over the past weekend at a pop-up clinic, said Cushman. 

He said the school did a good job with its health protocols as there was no further spread.

“It gives you an idea of how much work and how much concern these events can cause,” he said.

‘Perfect example’ of superspreading event

Cushman said this news comes despite his team’s efforts before Thanksgiving advising people to keep gatherings to a minimum with just immediate households or small bubbles.

“We can try as much as we can, but somehow there’s a certain amount of disregard for what we’re saying,” Cushman said. “I know everyone has COVID-fatigue but this is sort of a perfect example where you get one of those superspreading events.”

WATCH | Cushman says gathering led to about a dozen cases of COVID-19 so far:

Dr. Robert Cushman, medical officer of health for Renfrew County, says a Thanksgiving gathering attended by up to 20 people has led to a dozen cases of COVID-19 so far. 0:59

Cushman said these types of gatherings cause COVID-19 to spread “wildly,” and it’s a major concern from a public health perspective.

“It really affects everybody.” 

Cushman warned people to pay more attention, especially as the weather gets colder and people stay indoors.

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Coronavirus: Staggering 480 new Manitoba cases Friday, code red likely in Winnipeg – Global News



This story will be updated when the press conference begins and throughout the conference as it runs.

Manitoba set a staggering new record for daily COVID-19 cases Friday, reporting 480 new cases, as health officials announced tough new public health orders across the province including red level restrictions in the Winnipeg area.

The latest cases bring the province’s total number of cases reported since March to 5,374 and come as Manitoba’s top doctor and chief nursing officer announced the tightened restrictions at a live COVID-19 update Friday.

“We have pleaded with Manitobans to follow the fundamentals and to significantly reduce their contacts, and the numbers continue in the wrong direction,” said Dr. Brent Roussin, Manitoba’s chief public officer of health.

Read more:
Manitoba health minister hints at tighter rules after record coronavirus case jump

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“It is our hope that these new restrictions will help to halt the spread of this virus in order to ensure our health-care system is there for those who need it.

“I hope that this is a clear signal to Manitobans, and in particular the Winnipeg Metro Region, that we need to stay home, keep our distance and make a necessary collective sacrifice to protect all Manitobans.”

The province also announced three new deaths, bringing Manitoba’s total number fatalities related to COVID-19 to 65.

COVID-19 taking an extra toll on those with dementia

COVID-19 taking an extra toll on those with dementia

The latest victims are a man in his 80s and a woman in her 90s, both had been residents of Parkview Place Long Term Home in Winnipeg, the province said. Their deaths are the 20th and 21st connected to a deadly and ongoing outbreak at the Edmonton Street care home.

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Manitoba’s five-day test positivity rate jumped to 8.6 per cent with the new cases, according to the province’s online COVID-19 dashboard.

As well as moving the Winnipeg area to level red, or critical, under the province’s COVID-19 pandemic response system, Roussin said the rest of Manitoba will be moving to orange, or restricted.

The changes will come into effect in all regions of Manitoba starting Monday, Roussin said.

Winnipeg under code red

In Winnipeg the move means bars and restaurants will close except for take out and delivery and most retail will be reduced to 25 per cent capacity. Sports and recreation programming will be suspended and gyms and fitness centres will have to cut capacity to 25 per cent.

Masks will now be mandatory — even when exercising — at Winnipeg gyms and fitness centres.

Movie theatres and concert halls will be closed, while faith-based gatherings are reduced to 15 per cent, or 100 people, whichever is lower.

What the province calls “personal services” will see no changes and stay at 50 per cent capacity.

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Non-urgent and elective surgeries and diagnostics will be suspended, but Roussin said some essential and time-sensitive surgeries — including cancer, cardiac and trauma —  will go ahead. He said patients will be contacted directly.

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Hospital visits have also been suspended, with some exceptions possible for patients receiving end-of-life care, in labour and delivery, as well as in pediatrics.

Level orange restrictions

Starting Monday the Southern Health, Prairie Mountain Health, and Interlake-Eastern health region will move to the restricted, or orange, level on the pandemic response system, joining the Northern Health region, which has had the orders in place for the last couple of weeks.

The restrictions will see public and private group gathering sizes limited to five people, in addition to those already in a household.

Restaurants and bars will have capacity capped at 50 per cent and group sizes will be limited to five. Retail will also be cut to 50 per cent and the province is encouraging limiting the number of people who go shopping from each household.

Personal services will have no change and stay at 50 per cent capacity, while sports and recreation facilities will be limited to 25 per cent capacity.

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Gyms and fitness centers will being requiring contact information for all attendees and masks will be required at all times, except when exercising.

Faith-based gatherings will be cut to 20 per cent or 250 people, whichever is lower.

There will also be blended learning for Grades 9 to 12, and voluntary blended learning temporarily available for Kindergarten to Grade 8.

“The incubation period for this virus is up to 14 days – if we limit our contacts and stay home, we could see drastic reductions in transmission within weeks,” said  Roussin.

“We have done this before and I am confident we can do it again. But we need to be serious about this if we want to bend the curve.”

Record hospitalizations

Friday’s new cases include 309 in Winnipeg where the five-day test positivity rate rose to 9.7 per cent. They bring the total number of active cases reported across the province to 2,737.

The new cases were reported across the province Friday with 42 coming from the Interlake-Eastern health region, 25 coming from the Northern health regions, 10 reported in the Prairie Mountain Health region, and 94 identified in the Southern Health region.

Provincial data shows Manitoba set another grim record Friday, with 104 people in hospital with COVID-19 including 19 in intensive care.

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On Thursday — after the province announced a previously record-setting 193 new cases — Manitoba Health Minister Cameron Friesen hinted tighter public health measures were likely coming to the Winnipeg area.

Neither Friesen nor Premier Brian Pallister were scheduled to be part of Friday’s press event, leaving Roussin and Manitoba’s chief nursing officer, Lanette Siragusa to announce the new restrictions.

Read more:
Another record-setting day of coronavirus cases in Manitoba, 1 new death reported Thursday

Friday’s unprecedented new case count follows weeks of rising numbers across the province.

Click to play video 'Answering your COVID-19 questions, Oct. 29'

Answering your COVID-19 questions, Oct. 29

Answering your COVID-19 questions, Oct. 29

As of Thursday Manitoba had gone 10 straight days with daily case counts of 100 or more, and 19 virus-related deaths have been announced since Oct. 21.

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Earlier in the week Siragusa warned the recent spike in cases is taking a toll on health care.

Read more:
Another 3 coronavirus deaths, 170 new cases reported in Manitoba Wednesday

At the province’s last COVID-19 press conference Wednesday she said the occupancy rate of intensive care beds had risen to 92 per cent. A few dozen surgeries have had to be cancelled because staff have had to isolate while waiting for test results, she added.

The greater Winnipeg region is already under stricter rules than other areas, with lower public gathering limits and capacity caps at restaurants and lounges.

Click to play video 'Manitoba health officials give grim warnings as coronavirus numbers rise'

Manitoba health officials give grim warnings as coronavirus numbers rise

Manitoba health officials give grim warnings as coronavirus numbers rise

The province adopted a colour-coded pandemic response system in the summer. The Winnipeg region is already in the orange category, which has forced some bars to close and other licensed establishments to operate at reduced capacity and shut down nightly at 11 p.m.

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If the region is downgraded to the red category, the government has a range of options that could include closing non-essential stores, forcing restaurants to provide only takeout and delivery, and requiring schools to stop in-class instruction and move to remote learning.

–More to come.

Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out. In situations where you can’t keep a safe distance from others, public health officials recommend the use of a non-medical face mask or covering to prevent spreading the respiratory droplets that can carry the virus. In some provinces and municipalities across the country, masks or face coverings are now mandatory in indoor public spaces.

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For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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What you need to know about COVID-19 in Alberta on Friday, Oct. 30 –



The latest:

  • Starting next Monday (Nov. 2), the COVID-19 symptom list for Albertans under the age of 18 is changing. Runny nose and sore throat will be removed from the list of symptoms that require mandatory isolation for children.
  • As of last Monday (Oct. 26), there were outbreaks at 11 per cent of the province’s schools, or 101 schools, 39 of which had more than five cases. There were 680 cases in schools.
  • Alberta reported 477 new cases on Thursday, bringing the total active cases in the province to 4,921 — another new high after hitting record numbers nearly every day for the past week.
  • That comes after the province saw 1,440 new cases over the weekend — more than the number of cases reported in the entire month of June, and nearly as many as were reported in the month of May. 
  • Alberta’s data system will be undergoing some maintenance over the weekend, meaning no new numbers will be reported on Monday. Data updates are set to resume on Tuesday.
  • Five more people have died, bringing total deaths in the province to 318. 
  • There are 130 people in hospital, 18 of whom are in intensive care.
  • If you’re wondering how to handle Halloween this year amid the COVID-19 pandemic, here are some ideas on how to trick-or-treat, give out candy or celebrate in a different way — without the fear of catching or spreading the coronavirus.
  • The province has brought in new mandatory limits of 15 people at most social gatherings in Edmonton and Calgary.
  • The province is also recommending voluntary measures in both cities: wearing non-medical masks in all indoor work settings, except where people are alone in an office or cubicle, or a barrier is in place, and limiting themselves to no more than three cohorts. 
  • It also recommends that people in Edmonton and Calgary limit themselves to no more than three social cohorts.


What you need to know today in Alberta:

Alberta set another record on Thursday with 4,921 active cases of COVID-19, an increase of 128 from the day before.

The death toll now sits at 318, up five from Wednesday. Five more deaths were reported on Thursday. They involved:

  • A man in his 40s from the South zone.
  • A woman in her 80s linked to the outbreak in Agecare Skypointe in the Calgary zone.
  • A man in his 90s from the Calgary zone who was not a resident in continuing care.
  • A man in his 90s linked to the outbreak at Mount Royal Revera in the Calgary zone.
  • A woman in her 90s linked to the outbreak at the Edmonton General Care Centre. The death was the fifth linked to the outbreak and was announced Wednesday by Covenant Health.

Starting Monday, the COVID-19 symptom list for Albertans under the age of 18 is changing. Runny nose and sore throat will be removed from the list of symptoms that require mandatory isolation for children.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, said the changes to the symptom list are intended to get children and teenagers back into child care or classrooms as quickly and safely as possible, while minimizing the risk of COVID-19.

In the last week, she said, more than 3,400 children and youth who were tested for COVID-19 reported having a sore throat. Just over 700 of them had a sore throat as their only symptom, and less than one per cent of their tests came back positive.

Meanwhile, the number of cases of COVID-19 among school-aged children in Alberta has again surged to a new high, while the number of kids and teens being tested continues to decline.

Data from Alberta Health shows the number of new daily cases has continued to rise among five- to nine-year-olds and has again shot up, especially, among 10- to 19-year-olds.

Over the past week on record, an average of 85 cases were recorded per day among school-aged kids and teens.

As of Monday, there were outbreaks at 11 per cent of the province’s schools, or 101 schools, 39 of which had more than five cases. There were 680 cases in schools.

Alberta has reported a total of 27,042 cases since the pandemic began. Before this past week, which set new records on multiple days in a row, the highest active case total was 3,022, which was reported on April 30 at the peak of the first wave.

The active case rate per 100,000 people is 121 in Calgary and 183 in Edmonton. 

A snapshot of the active COVID-19 cases by health district in Calgary as of Oct. 28. (CBC)

A new temporary measure, which caps attendance at 15 for events where people will be “mixing and mingling” like parties and baby showers, applies in the Calgary and Edmonton areas.

The province is also recommending two voluntary measures in both cities: wearing non-medical masks in all indoor work settings, except where people are alone in an office or cubicle, or a barrier is in place, and limiting themselves to no more than three cohorts. 

The federal minimum security Pê Sâkâstêw Centre in Maskwacis has been locked down after two staff members tested positive for COVID-19. Another three staff members are self-isolating at home. 

A spokesperson for Correctional Service Canada told CBC News they don’t believe the infected employees were in close contact with any of the inmates.

An outbreak at the Calgary Correctional Centre has gotten bigger, according to new numbers provided by Alberta Health Services. As of Thursday, 100 inmates and 18 staff members have tested positive.

Albertans have been administered more than 597,000 doses of the flu shot so far this year, an increase of more than 50,000 when compared to the same time period last year.

“Thank you for doing your part to help stop the spread of influenza, and helping our health system stay focused on the pandemic response,” Hinshaw said Thursday.

Health officials have said this year it is more important than ever to get the flu shot because of the pandemic. 

Here’s the regional breakdown of active cases reported on Thursday.

  • Edmonton zone: 2,277, an increase of 22 from the day before.
  • Calgary zone: 1,879, an increase of 91 from the day before.
  • North zone: 325, an increase of one from the day before.
  • South zone: 256, the same as the day before.
  • Central zone: 162, an increase of two from the day before.
  • Unknown: 22, a decrease of two from the day before.  

Find out which neighbourhoods or communities have the most cases, how hard people of different ages have been hit, the ages of people in hospital, how Alberta compares to other provinces and more in: Here are the latest COVID-19 statistics for Alberta — and what they mean

What you need to know today in Canada:

As of 7:30 a.m. ET on Friday, Canada had 228,542 confirmed or presumptive coronavirus cases, with 27,259 of those active. Provinces and territories listed 191,209 as recovered or resolved. A CBC News tally of deaths based on provincial reports, regional health information and CBC’s reporting stood at 10,074.

In Ontario, new provincial projections for COVID-19 show that virus growth is slowing and the province is seeing a “more gentle curve” than it was initially preparing for, public health officials say.

Quebec reported 1,030 new cases of COVID-19 and 25 more deaths on Thursday, as federal Health Minister Patty Hajdu confirmed that the province would be receiving a much larger batch of rapid COVID-19 testing kits than previously announced.

The province will receive about 453,000 in total, with a little less than half of that order expected to arrive by the end of this week. That means Quebec will receive about 37 per cent of the 1.2 million kits being deployed across Canada by the federal government.

Saskatchewan reported 82 new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, breaking the record for the highest single-day jump in new cases since the beginning of the pandemic.

Manitoba also had a record-breaking day Thursday with 193 new cases and 97 people in hospital with the illness — both new highs for the province. It also announced one new death.

The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on Canadians suffering from mental illness, opioid addiction and other substance abuse problems, says a new study released today by the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) which confirms anecdotal reports warning that the pandemic’s health consequences extend well beyond the novel coronavirus itself.

(CBC News)

Self-assessment and supports:

With winter cold and influenza season approaching, Alberta Health Services will prioritize Albertans for testing who have symptoms, and those groups which are at higher risk of getting or spreading the virus.

General asymptomatic testing is no longer available to anyone, but voluntary asymptomatic testing is available to:

  • School teachers and staff.
  • Health-care workers.
  • Staff and residents at long-term care and congregate living facilities.
  • Any Albertans experiencing homelessness.
  • Travellers requiring a test before departure.

Additional groups can also access asymptomatic testing if required.

The province says Albertans who have returned to Canada from other countries must self-isolate. Unless your situation is critical and requires a call to 911, Albertans are advised to call Health Link at 811 before visiting a physician, hospital or other health-care facility.

If you have symptoms, even mild, you are to self-isolate for at least 10 days from the onset of symptoms, until the symptoms have disappeared. 

You can find Alberta Health Services’ latest coronavirus updates here.

The province also operates a confidential mental health support line at 1-877-303-2642 and addiction help line at 1-866-332-2322, both available 24 hours a day. 

Online resources are available for advice on handling stressful situations and ways to talk with children.

There is a 24-hour family violence information line at 310-1818 to get anonymous help in more than 170 languages, and Alberta’s One Line for Sexual Violence is available at 1-866-403-8000, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

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