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What you need to know about COVID-19 in Ottawa on Tuesday, May 26 –



Recent developments:

What’s happening today?

People staying away from health-care facilities out of fear of the coronavirus are hurting clinics that rely on fees, says the Ontario Medical Association, pointing to the closure of the Asclepios Medical Centre in east Ottawa.

WATCH: 9,000-patient clinic closing causing uncertainty

Carole Legault and Sophia Wright, who were both patients at Asclepios Medical Centre, say its closure has left them facing a lot of uncertainty made more stressful by the ongoing pandemic. 0:44

With drive-in theatres open in other jurisdictions and poised to open in Quebec Friday, eastern Ontario’s drive-ins say they’re ready to safely screen movies again when given the OK.

A teacher in Kazabazua, Que., tells CBC what it’s like to back in the classroom with students during the pandemic.

Two weeks back in class, Quebec teacher Letha Henry says kids are no longer worried they’ll get in trouble if they get too close to one other. She simply gives them a gentle reminder of the two-meter rule that has become a big part of school life. (Submitted by Letha Henry)

Send in your questions about COVID-19 and the workplace for CBC Radio’s Ottawa Morning‘s weekly Q&A on Wednesday after 8 a.m.

How many cases are there?

There have been 1,901 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ottawa and 234 deaths linked to the respiratory illness. There are more than 3,000 known cases across eastern Ontario and western Quebec.

More than 2,100 people in the region have recovered from COVID-19.

The deaths of 49 people in Leeds, Grenville and Lanark counties and 30 more in the wider region have also been tied to the coronavirus. 

Confirmed cases are just a snapshot because not everyone can be tested and results take time to process, though testing criteria are being expanded.

What’s open and closed?

Ontario is in “stage one” of its three-stage reopening plan. When ready, its next stage should bring more offices, outdoor spaces and gatherings back.

Quebec now allows larger outdoor gatherings. Its libraries and museums can reopen Friday, with malls and services such as dentist offices and hair salons poised to reopen Monday.

Gatineau Park and provincial parks are now open with limits, like the National Capital Commission and Ottawa-Gatineau city parks

National parks start to reopen Monday.

This Sunday, the farmers market at Lansdowne Park reopens for preordering and picking up at a designated time.

The Ottawa Farmers’ Market at Lansdowne Park in early March 2020. There won’t be any payment at pickup points when the market resumes; all transactions will be done beforehand. (CBC)

Ontario schools are closed through summer. Post-secondary schools are moving toward more online classes this fall, with the province promising a fall plan for younger students by July.

Quebec elementary schools outside Montreal are open. Its high schools, CEGEPs and universities are closed to in-person classes until fall.

Ottawa has cancelled event permits until the end of August. Quebec has asked organizers to cancel events until September.

People pass a mural of a person wearing a mask by artist Dom Laporte in Ottawa, on Sunday, May 24, 2020. (Justin Tang/The Canadian Press)

Distancing and isolating

The coronavirus primarily spreads through droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes. People don’t need to have symptoms to be contagious.

That means physical distancing measures such as avoiding non-essential trips, working from home, not gathering and staying at least two metres away from anyone they don’t live with.

WATCH: COVID-19’s spectrum of risk

Living life during a pandemic can be confusing. But experts say you can navigate how to approach different settings and activities once you know the risks. 1:11

Ottawa Public Health recommends people wear a fabric or non-medical mask when they can’t always stay two metres from strangers, such as at a grocery store. 

Anyone who has symptoms, travelled recently outside Canada or, specifically in Ottawa, is waiting for a COVID-19 test result must self-isolate for at least 14 days.

The same goes for anyone in Ontario who’s been in contact with someone who’s tested positive or is presumed to have COVID-19.

People 70 and older or with compromised immune systems or underlying health conditions should also self-isolate.

Front-line worker Celine Robitaille wears a face shield and mask as she waits for a client to come to the door to pick up a meal at lunchtime at the Shepherds of Good Hope soup kitchen in Ottawa, on Sunday, May 24, 2020, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Justin Tang/The Canadian Press)

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

COVID-19 can range from a cold-like illness to a severe lung infection, with common symptoms including fever, a dry cough, vomiting and the loss of taste or smell. 

Less common symptoms include chills, headaches and pink eye. The Ontario government says in rare cases, children can develop a rash.

If you have severe symptoms, call 911.

Where to get tested

In Ottawa any resident who feels they need a test, even if they are not showing symptoms, can now be tested.

Tests are done at the Brewer Arena from 9 a.m. until 3:30 p.m., seven days a week, or at 595 Moodie Dr. and 1485 Heron Rd. those same hours on weekdays.

Testing has also expanded for local residents and employees who work in the Eastern Ontario Health Unit area.

There is a drive-thru test centre in Casselman and assessment centres in Hawkesbury and Winchester that don’t require people to call ahead and others in Rockland, and Cornwall that require an appointment.

In Kingston, the assessment centre at the Kingston Memorial Centre is open Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on weekends from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. for anyone with symptoms. 

Napanee‘s test centre is open 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily for people who call for an appointment.

Ontario premier wants more people to get tested for COVID-19, even if they’re not showing symptoms of the virus. But is that an effective way to control community spread? We get an infectious disease expert to weigh in. 7:49

The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark unit asks you to call it at 1-800-660-5853, ext. 2499 or your doctor if you have questions after doing the province’s self-assessment.

It has a testing site in Smiths Falls which requires a referral, as well as a walk-in site in Brockville at the Memorial Centre, Almonte by calling 613-325-1208 and a home test service for people in care or with mobility challenges.

WATCH: Slow return for Canada’s dental offices

Dental offices across the country are slowly reopening, but they have to take precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and many are having a hard time finding the necessary protective equipment. 2:05

The public health unit in the Belleville area is asking people to call it at 613-966-5500 or Telehealth with questions.

You can arrange a test in Bancroft, Belleville or Trenton by calling the health unit or in Picton by calling it, Telehealth or your family doctor. You may also qualify for a home test.

Renfrew County is also providing home testing under some circumstances. Residents without access to a family doctor can call 1-844-727-6404 if they have health questions, COVID-19-related or not.

If you’re concerned about the coronavirus, take the self-assessment.

In western Quebec:

Outaouais residents should call 819-644-4545 if they have symptoms. They could end up being referred to Gatineau’s testing centre.

First Nations communities

Local communities have declared states of emergency, put in a curfew or both.

Akwesasne has opened a mobile COVID-19 test site available by appointment only. Anyone returning to Akwesasne who’s been farther than 80 kilometres away is asked to self-isolate for 14 days.

Anyone in Tyendinaga who has symptoms can call 613-967-3603 to talk to a nurse.

Pikwakanagan‘s council plans to let businesses reopen May 29 and Kitigan Zibi is keeping schools closed through the summer.

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Alberta to provide COVID-19 update Wednesday afternoon – Global News



As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health will provide an update on the province’s number of new confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus Wednesday afternoon.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw will provide the update at 3:30 p.m.

The news conference will be streamed live in this article.

Read more:
85 additional cases of COVID-19 in Alberta Tuesday, over half of them recorded in the Edmonton zone

On Tuesday, the province saw a slight decrease in active cases, with 85 people testing positive for COVID-19, bringing the provincial total to 1,004, 84 less than the day before.

[ Sign up for our Health IQ newsletter for the latest coronavirus updates ]

Of those active cases, 64 people were in hospital with the virus and 14 people were receiving treatment in intensive care.

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Since Alberta’s first confirmed case of the novel coronavirus back in March, as of Aug. 11, Alberta has recorded 11,772, of those, 10,552 Albertans have recovered.

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

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Four new COVID-19 cases in Waterloo Region on Wednesday –



Region of Waterloo Public Health reported four new cases of the coronavirus on Wednesday morning.

Two are due to community transmission, while the other pair are tied to travel.

So far this week, there have been 12 new cases, and a total of 1,410 since March.

The number of active cases increased by three to 25, with two of those cases currently receiving treatment in hospital.

One more case has also been resolved, improving that total to 1,263.

A total of 119 local deaths have been linked to the virus, but there have been no additional deaths reported since July 17.

Meantime, an outbreak remains active at A.R. Goudie long-term care – a resident tested positive, but no more residents or staff have since it was first declared on August 3.

Here’s the provincial COVID-19 breakdown for Wednesday:

  • 40,289 total cases (95 new)
  • 49 people are being treated in hospital
  • 36,590 resolved cases
  • 2,787 deaths (one new)

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Cape Breton's Route 19 brewery closed indefinitely after customer failed to self-isolate – Global News



A brewery in Inverness, N.S., says it’s closing until further notice after a customer visited the restaurant on Sunday while failing to self-isolate after travelling to the province.

The Nova Scotia government still requires anyone travelling from outside of the four Atlantic provinces to self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival as a precautionary measure against the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Read more:
Nova Scotia reports no new coronavirus cases on Tuesday

Stefan Gagliardi, chief beer officer at the Route 19 Brewing Tap and Grill, told Global News on Wednesday that the brewery will remain closed as a precautionary measure.

“We found out (someone failed to self-isolate) through one of our employees who overheard a conversation elsewhere later on Sunday, and they brought it up to us,” he said over the phone.

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RCMP investigated and confirmed to Global News that they have charged a 38-year-old woman from British Columbia under the province’s Health Protection Act, which carries a $1,000 fine.

Nova Scotians who work away from home frustrated, confused by self-isolation rules

Nova Scotians who work away from home frustrated, confused by self-isolation rules

Gagliardi said that the Nova Scotia Health Authority has told staff and visitors to Route 19 on Sunday to monitor for symptoms and to go to the 811 website for further direction if symptoms develop.

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The brewery was told it didn’t need to close as it was not a confirmed case of coronavirus, but it still left workers feeling uncertain.

It doesn’t feel good. It’s not a good feeling because our staff didn’t feel safe,” he said.

“As a business and, you know, our staff together, we decided we weren’t willing to take that risk.”

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The facility was thoroughly sanitized on Monday morning but the restaurant will remain closed until further notice.

READ MORE: Coronavirus took their lives. Here’s how their families will remember them

The closure will affect about 30 people including, kitchen and cleaning crews, bartenders, waiters and waitresses, Gagliardi said.

He says that people should follow the health recommendations set out by the province.

“It just affects us in a way that feels a little bit unfair because everybody is trying to do their best,” he said.

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

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