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Woman spent seven years trying to lighten her skin, got mercury poisoning instead – BGR

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Lots of people have very specific beauty regimens that they stick to for months, years or even decades at a time. You can’t really pass judgment on someone for doing what they think they have to in order to maintain their appearance, but when you throw bootleg products into the mix, the risks of unintended self-harm rise dramatically.

A new report from the CDC is a great example of how an otherwise harmless beauty routine can cause serious problems, up to and including life-threatening complications. In it, the plight of a 47-year-old Sacramento woman is detailed, and her habit of applying skin-lightening cream landed her in the hospital.

As the CDC report explains, the woman visited her doctor this past summer and complained of weakness in her extremities and uncomfortable sensations in her arms and legs. Medical staff treated her on an outpatient basis and monitored her condition, which continued to worsen.

Subsequent blood and urine tests returned mercury readings that were quite literally off the charts. She was admitted to the hospital and health officials began to investigate the source of the mercury poisoning. Eventually, the investigators realized that the skin lightening cream she had been routinely applying was slowly poisoning her with organic mercury.

The fact that it was organic mercury is significant because, unlike some contaminated products that contain sky-high mercury levels, the mercury content of the cream the woman was using was much lower. This might seem like a good thing, but the opposite is actually true. With exposure to lower concentration organic mercury, the woman was able to continue using the product for a long period of time before noticing symptoms, ultimately causing greater damage.

“Despite prolonged chelation therapy, the patient remains unable to verbalize or care for herself, requiring ongoing tube feeding for nutritional support,” the CDC writes.

The CDC notes that an investigation into the source of the mercury in the product itself is still ongoing, but warns against using any kinds of creams or lotions that may have come from illegitimate sources.

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Marine Atlantic employee on Nova Scotia-Newfoundland ferry tests positive for COVID-19 – The Telegram

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NORTH SYDNEY, N.S. —

Marine Atlantic has removed one of its ferries from service and cancelled a pair of crossings today following news that one of its crew members tested positive for COVID-19.

The company was notified of the result by Nova Scotia public health officials on Tuesday and has since removed the MV Blue Puttees from service. The vessel is set to receive an enhanced cleaning.

The Public Health Authority in Nova Scotia has already started contact tracing. All crew members on the vessel who completed their shift as well as all crew currently on the vessel will be tested. They must self-isolate on the ferry after the testing.

With the Blue Puttees moored, Marine Atlantic cancelled its morning crossing from North Sydney, N.S. to Port aux Basques and this evening’s crossing from Newfoundland to Cape Breton.

Marine Atlantic says the MV Highlanders will remain in service and the MV Atlantic Vision is currently preparing to enter service should it be required in the days ahead.

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Weekly COVID-19 trends in Ottawa showing signs of improvement – CTV Edmonton

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OTTAWA —
Several weekly COVID-19 trends in Ottawa are showing signs of improvement following a third straight day of Ottawa Public Health reporting fewer than 100 new cases of COVID-19 each day.

Ottawa Public Health is reporting 67 more people in Ottawa have tested positive for COVID-19 and two more people have died.

OPH reported 56 new cases of COVID-19 in the city on Tuesday and 85 on Monday and also reported two new deaths each day.

Ontario health officials reported 2,655 new cases of COVID-19 reported provincewide on Wednesday. Ontario also reported 89 new deaths and 3,714 resolved cases on Wednesday.

According to Ottawa Public Health’s COVID-19 dashboard, there have been 12,494 total lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ottawa since the pandemic began and 409 residents have died.

The weekly trends of new cases per 100,000 residents in the last seven days has dropped below 80, and the estimated reproduction rate–the number of additional people each person with the virus infects–has also plummeted. The testing positivity rate is below 4 per cent for the first time since early January.

However, the number of people in hospital with COVID-19 complications is now above 40.

OTTAWA’S COVID-19 KEY STATISTICS

A province-wide lockdown went into effect on Dec. 26, 2020. Ottawa Public Health moved Ottawa into its red zone in early January.

A provincial stay-at-home order has been in effect since Jan. 14, 2021.

Ottawa Public Health data:

  • COVID-19 cases per 100,000 (previous seven days): 72.9 cases
  • Positivity rate in Ottawa: 3.5 per cent (Jan. 13 – Jan. 19)
  • Reproduction number: 0.72 (seven day average)

Reproduction values greater than 1 indicate the virus is spreading and each case infects more than one contact. If it is less than 1, it means spread is slowing. 

VACCINES

  • Doses administered in Ottawa (first and second shots): 21,951
  • Doses received in Ottawa: 25,350

Ottawa Public Health says the city received 2,925 doses of COVID-19 vaccines on Jan. 18.

ACTIVE CASES OF COVID-19 IN OTTAWA

The number of people in Ottawa with known active cases of COVID-19 has dropped for the fourth day in a row. It now stands at 1,057, down from 1,137 on Tuesday. The number of active cases peaked at 1,286 on Saturday.

OPH says 145 more cases of COVID-19 in the city have resolved, bringing Ottawa’s total number of resolved cases to 11,028.

The number of active cases is the number of total laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 minus the numbers of resolved cases and deaths. A case is considered resolved 14 days after known symptom onset or positive test result.

HOSPITALIZATIONS IN OTTAWA

There are now 42 people in Ottawa hospitals with COVID-19 complications, the highest figure so far in 2021. Eight people are in the intensive care unit.

Of the people in hospital, one is 10 to 19 years old (this person is in the ICU), one is in their 30s (this person is in the ICU), one is in their 40s, seven are in their 50s (two are in the ICU), eight are in their 60s (two are in the ICU), seven are in their 70s (two are in the ICU), 10 are in their 80s, and seven are 90 or older. 

TESTING

Ontario health officials say 54,307 COVID-19 tests were performed across Ontario on Tuesday and there are 48,963 tests still under investigation.

Local testing information from the Ottawa COVID-19 Testing Taskforce is due this afternoon.

CASES OF COVID-19 IN OTTAWA BY AGE CATEGORY

Here is a breakdown of all known COVID-19 cases in Ottawa by age category:

  • 0-9 years old: 2 new cases (890 total cases)
  • 10-19 years-old: 4 new cases (1,576 total cases)
  • 20-29 years-old: 18 new cases (2,656 total cases)
  • 30-39 years-old: 14 new cases (1,730 total cases)
  • 40-49 years-old: 10 new cases (1,637 total cases)
  • 50-59 years-old: 11 new cases (1,480 total cases)
  • 60-69-years-old: 4 new cases (901 total cases)
  • 70-79 years-old: 2 new cases (564 total cases)
  • 80-89 years-old: 2 new cases (634 total cases)
  • 90+ years old: 0 new cases (423 total cases)
  • Unknown: 0 new cases (3 cases total)

CASES OF COVID-19 AROUND THE REGION

  • Eastern Ontario Health Unit: 16 new cases
  • Hastings Prince Edward Public Health: 2 new cases
  • Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox & Addington Public Health: 2 new cases
  • Leeds, Grenville & Lanark District Health Unit: 2 new cases
  • Renfrew County and District Health Unit: 0 new cases
  • Outaouais Region: 21 new cases

INSTITUTIONAL OUTBREAKS

Ottawa Public Health is reporting COVID-19 outbreaks at 38 institutions in Ottawa, including long-term care homes, retirement homes, daycares, hospitals and schools.

Outbreaks at the Alta Vista Manor and Redwoods retirement homes have ended. An outbreak at a local group home has also ended.

New outbreaks were declared at a Wee Watch home childcare location in Nepean, the Stirling Park retirement home and the Ravines Indpendent Living home. 

There are six active community outbreaks. An outbreak at a multi-unit dwelling has ended.

Three are linked to health workplaces, one is linked to an office workplace, one is linked to a distribution centre, and one is linked to a services workplace

The schools and childcare spaces currently experiencing outbreaks are:

  1. Andrew Fleck Children’s Services – Home Child Care – 29101 
  2. Greenboro Children’s Centre
  3. Montessori by Brightpath
  4. Ruddy Family Y Child Care
  5. Services à l’enfance Grandir Ensemble – La Maisonée – 28627
  6. Wee Watch Nepean home childcare – 29084 (NEW)

The long-term care homes, retirement homes, hospitals, and other spaces currently experiencing outbreaks are:

  1. Besserer Place
  2. Centre D’Accueil Champlain
  3. Colonel By Retirement Home
  4. Extendicare Laurier Manor
  5. Extendicare Medex
  6. Extendicare New Orchard Lodge
  7. Extendicare West End Villa
  8. Garry J. Armstrong long-term care home
  9. Grace Manor Long-term Care Home
  10. Granite Ridge long-term care home
  11. Group Home – 28608
  12. Group Home – 28740
  13. Group Home – 29045
  14. Group Home – 29049
  15. Group Home – 29052
  16. Hillel Lodge
  17. Madonna Care Community
  18. Montfort Long-term Care Centre 
  19. Oakpark Retirement Community
  20. Park Place
  21. Perley and Rideau Veterans’ Health Centre 
  22. Peter D. Clark long-term care home 
  23. Shelter – 28365
  24. Sisters of Charity Couvent Mont Saint-Joseph
  25. St. Patrick’s Home
  26. Stirling Park Retirement Community (NEW)
  27. Supported Independent Living – 28110
  28. Supported Independent Living – 29100 
  29. The Ravines Independent Living (NEW)
  30. Valley Stream Retirement Residence
  31. Villa Marconi
  32. Villagia in the Glebe Retirement Residence

A single laboratory-confirmed case of COVID-19 in a resident or staff member of a long-term care home, retirement home or shelter triggers an outbreak response, according to Ottawa Public Health. In childcare settings, a single confirmed, symptomatic case in a staff member, home daycare provider, or child triggers an outbreak.

Under provincial guidelines, a COVID-19 outbreak in a school is defined as two or more lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases in students and/or staff in a school with an epidemiological link, within a 14-day period, where at least one case could have reasonably acquired their infection in the school (including transportation and before or after school care).  

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Manitoba officials to give COVID-19 update at 12:30 p.m. – CBC.ca

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Health officials in Manitoba are set to give the latest news on COVID-19 in the province on Wednesday afternoon.

CBC News will live stream the update here at 12:30 p.m. Manitobans will hear from Dr. Jazz Atwal, acting deputy chief provincial public health officer, and Dr. Joss Reimer, a medical officer of health for Manitoba Health and a member of the province’s COVID-19 vaccine implementation task force.

The news conference comes one day after the province floated possible changes to public health orders that will expire on Friday.

Those possible tweaks, which are being considered for all regions but the hard-hit north, include allowing some small gatherings and scrapping restrictions on what can be sold in stores.

Manitoba also is reassessing how many vaccine appointments can be booked after the already reduced Pfizer-BioNTech shipments the province expected to get over the next few weeks were cut in half.

The slowdown comes after Pfizer temporarily paused some production lines as it aims to expand manufacturing capacity in the long term.

Help is on the way for Garden Hill First Nation in northern Manitoba, after federal Public Safety Minister Bill Blair approved a request for assistance from the Canadian Armed Forces for the community as it deals with an outbreak.

Cases in Manitoba’s Northern Health Region were down slightly on Tuesday; the area saw 500 new cases last week.

On Monday, the Manitoba Metis Federation opened a COVID-19 testing site for Métis people in and around Winnipeg.

The organization partnered with a local bioinformation services firm after it was unable to get information from the province on how many Métis people in Manitoba have tested positive for COVID-19, president David Chartrand said.

Meanwhile, federal Northern Affairs Minister Dan Vandal wrote to Premier Brian Pallister, asking that the federation to be included in the province’s vaccine task force and distribution plans. Vandal is also the member of Parliament for Winnipeg’s St. Boniface-St. Vital riding.

Manitoba has reported 229 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 15 more coronavirus-linked deaths since Monday.

The province’s latest fatalities include a tally of 11 on Tuesday, the first time that number was in the double digits in nearly two weeks.

Those numbers are a marked improvement from two months ago, when daily case counts hovered around the low 400s and on one day peaked at 546 new cases.

Manitoba’s five-day test positivity rate, a rolling average of the COVID-19 tests that come back positive, has also been trending downward, though fewer people are being tested for the illness.

The decreasing numbers are why Manitoba is now in a position to consider loosening some of its pandemic rules, Chief Provincial Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin said on Tuesday.

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