Ontario is not so much reopening as it is “transitioning” to a colour-coded COVID-19 framework, Premier Doug Ford says.
As public health officials warn of a possible variant-fuelled third wave, but as daily case numbers drop below 1,000, Ford is under pressure from all sides to explain his government’s reopening decisions.
We apologize, but this video has failed to load.
The province lifted stay-at-home orders Tuesday on 27 more public health units, placing many around the Greater Toronto area in the red zone.
“We have the most stringent protocols anywhere in the entire country and the most stringent restrictions anywhere in the country,” Ford said Tuesday, as the Ontario legislature resumed.
“Just keep in mind, when it comes to Peel, Toronto and York, it’s going to be up to the chief medical officer and the local medical officers if they want to open up and go into the grey-lockdown scenario on Feb. 22. But we won’t hesitate to pull on the brakes at any given time.”
Story continues below
This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
NDP Leader Andrea Horwath said the economy is being reopened, regardless of Ford’s “transitioning” comment.
“Many, many of the experts that are advising the government are saying publicly that they think we’re reopening too fast and that the proper measures are not in place to prevent the third wave,” she said.
We apologize, but this video has failed to load.
Meanwhile, Health Minister Christine Elliott said the government is expecting 157,000 new doses of the Pfizer vaccine Wednesday, but doesn’t know how much more Pfizer or Moderna will flow to Ontario.
“We don’t have a reliable supply chain at the moment,” she said.
While it’s clear that vaccine supply is an issue, problems with getting all people in long-term care (LTC) vaccinated in a timely way are the result of failures by the Ford government, Horwath said.
“The minister of health actually suggested that that was because of the vaccine shortage — it was not,” she said. “It’s because the government wasn’t ready and didn’t put the effort or the money into planning for the vaccine rollout.”
Sign up to receive daily headline news from the Toronto SUN, a division of Postmedia Network Inc.
By clicking on the sign up button you consent to receive the above newsletter from Postmedia Network Inc. You may unsubscribe any time by clicking on the unsubscribe link at the bottom of our emails. Postmedia Network Inc. | 365 Bloor Street East, Toronto, Ontario, M4W 3L4 | 416-383-2300
Thanks for signing up!
A welcome email is on its way. If you don’t see it please check your junk folder.
The next issue of The Toronto Sun Headline News will soon be in your inbox.
We encountered an issue signing you up. Please try again
The Brewer Ottawa Hospital/CHEO Assessment Centre: Open Monday to Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. and Friday to Sunday from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
COVID-19 Drive-thru assessment centre at National Arts Centre: Open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Moodie Care and Testing Centre: Open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
The Heron Care and Testing Centre: Open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The Ray Friel Care and Testing Centre: Open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
COVID-19 screening tool:
The COVID-19 screening tool for students heading back to in-person classes can be found here.
Classic Symptoms: fever, new or worsening cough, shortness of breath
Other symptoms: sore throat, difficulty swallowing, 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
The Ottawa Hospital blames a “minor booking issue” for the long line outside the COVID-19 vaccination centre at the Civic campus.
Dozens of people lined up in a snowstorm on Saturday to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. The Ottawa Hospital says people in line were hospital and community-based health care workers, staff and essential caregivers from long-term care homes, and staff from high-risk retirement homes.
In a statement to CTV News Ottawa, the Ottawa Hospital said the lineup was the result of a booking error.
“The Ottawa Hospital’s vaccine clinic experienced a minor booking issue (Saturday) morning which caused the line up to be longer than usual,” the Ottawa Hospital said. “Appointments are continuing as scheduled.”
Ottawa’s top doctor is addressing some concerns about COVID-19 vaccine efficacy, just days after Health Canada approved the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine.
“62 per cent effectiveness is still better than zero per cent,” said Dr. Vera Etches, Ottawa’s medical officer of health during an interview on CTV News at Six on Saturday.
The AstraZeneca vaccine has already faced questions about its efficacy. Health Canada said receiving two doses of the vaccine is between 59 and 62 per cent effective. Pfizer-BioNTech has said its vaccine is 94.5 per cent effective after two doses.
Dr. Etches says the effectiveness compares to the seasonal flu shot.
“We know that compares to other vaccines we have, like the annual influenza vaccine is sometimes only around that level of effectiveness. So you know, the more protection that we can add in to the population and build immunity at this point, the better.”
Sixty-two more people tested positive for COVID-19 in Ottawa on Saturday.
Ottawa Public Health reported no new deaths linked to the virus.
Since the first case of COVID-19 in Ottawa on March 11, 2020, there have been 14,650 laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19, including 439 deaths.
The St-Albert Cheese Co-op plans to resume production in a limited capacity on Monday after a COVID-19 outbreak.
The factory east of Ottawa temporarily closed after three employees tested positive for COVID-19 this week.
The Eastern Ontario Health Unit tested all employees, and St-Albert Cheese Co-op director general Eric Lafontaine says the early signs are positive.
“Right now we’re still waiting the final result of the health unit, but so far what we got in is mostly 90 per cent, and 90 per cent is negative so that’s a really good sign, so we know it didn’t spread across. That’s the most important thing.”
The factory store at the St-Albert Cheese Co-op reopened on Saturday.
As of Saturday, 14,650 Ottawa residents have tested positive for COVID-19. There are currently 488 known active cases and 13,723 resolved cases. Public health officials have attributed 439 deaths to COVID-19.
Details on <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/OttCity?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#OttCity</a>’s first pop-up vaccination clinic will be announced on Monday , March 1. Please do not call <a href=”https://twitter.com/OttawaHealth?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@ottawahealth</a> or 3-1-1 at this time, as appointments are not yet available. To find out eligibility for this clinic, visit: <a href=”https://t.co/BPpKuJ3hou”>https://t.co/BPpKuJ3hou</a> <a href=”https://t.co/zmEProsLvL”>pic.twitter.com/zmEProsLvL</a>
Social gatherings can have up to 10 people indoors or 25 people outdoors. Organized events can be larger.
People are asked to only have close contact with people they live with, be masked and distanced for all other in-person contact and only travel for essential reasons, especially between differently coloured zones.
Both Ottawa Public Health (OPH) and the EOHU are orange under the province’s colour-coded pandemic scale.
Health Canada recommends older adults and people with underlying medical conditions and/or weakened immune systems stay home as much as possible and get help with errands.
Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms should self-isolate, as should those who’ve been ordered to do so by their public health unit. The length varies in Quebec and Ontario; the latter recently updated its rules, including in schools.
Anyone returning to the community on the Canadian side of the international border who’s been farther than 160 kilometres away — or visited Montreal — for non-essential reasons is asked to self-isolate for 14 days.
People in Pikwakanagan can book a COVID-19 test by calling 613-625-2259. Anyone in Tyendinaga who’s interested in a test can call 613-967-3603.
Inuit in Ottawa can call the Akausivik Inuit Family Health Team at 613-740-0999 for service, including testing and now vaccines, in Inuktitut or English on weekdays.
Privacy & Cookies Policy
Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.
Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.