What you need to know about COVID-19 in Ottawa on Saturday, July 4

CBC Ottawa's latest roundup of key updates during the coronavirus pandemic.

Key updates on the coronavirus pandemic in the region

A driver is alone on a go-kart track in the Ottawa community of Stittsville on Canada Day, on Wednesday, July 1, 2020, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Justin Tang/The Canadian Press)

Recent developments

  • Ontario reported an additional 121 cases of COVID-19 on Saturday, the lowest daily case count in more than a week.
  • Local health officials in Kingston, Ont., have reported another three cases of COVID-19 as of Saturday. The region's total now sits at 105 cases. 
  • Ottawa has gone a full week without a single COVID-19 death being reported by health officials. 
  • A mandatory mask policy in Ottawa could come into effect as soon as Monday
  • Somerset Street W. between Bank and O'Connor streets will now close on weekends.
  • Ottawa reported three new COVID-19 cases on Friday but no new deaths. 
  • Renfrew County has recorded its first new case of COVID-19 since the beginning of June.

What's the latest?

More streets in Ottawa are closing to give patios and pedestrians more space to practise physical distancing. 

On Friday, Mayor Jim Watson announced that Somerset Street W. between Bank and O'Connor streets will close on weekends to vehicles.

That's in addition to some roads in the ByWard Market that close to car traffic today.

Kingston health officials reported four new cases of COVID-19 on Friday. Health authorities in the region say they're seeing more cases due to the disease spreading at a third nail salon in the city.

Renfew County is warning residents they could have been exposed to the virus after a new positive case.

The Renfrew County and District Health Unit issued an advisory Thursday, stating the person had visited the Walmart in Pembroke, Ont., between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. on June 22 and the Shopper's Drug Mart in Petawawa, Ont., between 2:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. on June 24.

Anyone who visited either location during those times is asked to self monitor for symptoms.

The City of Ottawa plans to begin to reopen pools starting on July 6. (Emily Matthews/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette via AP)

How many cases are there?

There have been 2,106 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ottawa and 263 deaths. The vast majority of cases in the city, 1,797, are classified as resolved. 

Health units report more than 3,300 known cases across eastern Ontario and western Quebec and more than 2,800 people in the region have recovered from COVID-19.

Kingston now has 36 new, active cases of COVID-19. Most are linked to three nail salons: Binh's Nails and Spa, where the recent outbreak started, Kingdom Nails and Georgia Nail Salon. Amherstview Golf Club has also seen new cases. 

Clients at all four businesses are being asked to self-isolate and get tested for COVID-19.

COVID-19 has killed 102 people outside Ottawa: 52 in Leeds, Grenville and Lanark counties, 17 in other parts of eastern Ontario and 33 in the Outaouais.

What's open and closed?

Eastern Ontario is in "Stage 2" of the province's recovery plan, allowing more activities and "circles" of up to 10 people that don't have to distance.

Some streets in Ottawa's ByWard Market turn into patio space starting today, including parts of Clarence Street, William Street and a section of the north side of York Street.

Ottawa's pools start to open next week.

The City of Ottawa has started warning people tickets will be given out again next week for overstaying at on-street parking spaces with posted time limits.

The National Gallery of Canada reopens Thursdays to Sundays starting July 18. 

A woman wears a face mask as she looks on at an open shopping mall in Montreal, Saturday, June 20, 2020. Non-medical masks may become mandatory in Ottawa at indoor, public settings as soon as Monday, July 6. (Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press )

Quebec now allows indoor, distanced gatherings of up to 50 people, including in places of worship and indoor sports venues, and has relaxed rules at daycares.

The province has also allowed bars, spas, water parks and casinos to reopen.

Quebec's back-to-school plans bring older students to classrooms again. Ontario has put three options for next school year on the table, while post-secondary schools are moving toward more online classes in September.

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 working from home and in Ontario, staying at least two metres away from anyone they don't live with or have in their circle.

The City of Ottawa could make fabric masks mandatory at indoor, public settings as soon as on Monday. Residents are encouraged to wear them now in places where they cannot practise physical distancing.

Keith Egli, chair of the Ottawa Board of Health, says the city will announce a plan on Monday to make masks mandatory in indoor commercial settings. 0:40

Anyone who has symptoms or travelled recently outside Canada must self-isolate for at least 14 days.

Specifically in Ottawa, anyone waiting for a COVID-19 test result must self-isolate at least until they know the result.

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.

Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health strongly urges self-isolation for individuals who have weakened immune systems and Ottawa Public Health recommends people over 70 stay home as much as possible. 

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 pinkeye. The Ontario government says in rare cases, children can develop a rash.

If you have severe symptoms, call 911.

Chris Wagg, recreation supervisor with the City of Ottawa, says pools around the city will begin opening July 6 with measures in place to allow for physical distancing between swimmers. 1:02

Where to get tested

In eastern Ontario:

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

Inuit in Ottawa can call the Akausivik Inuit Family Health Team at 613-740-0999 for service, including testing, in Inuktitut or English 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.

Others in Rockland and Cornwall require an appointment.

A COVID-19 assessment centre will open in Alexandria next week, running Tuesdays and Thursdays by appointment only.

In Kingston, the Leon's Centre is now open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. every day, replacing the location at the Kingston Memorial Centre. Find it at Gate 2.

Napanee's test centre is open daily for people who call for an appointment.

The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark unit asks you to get tested if you have a symptom or concerns about exposure.

It has a walk-in site in Brockville open seven days a week at the Memorial Centre and testing sites in Smiths Falls and Almonte which require an appointment.

The public health unit in the Belleville area is asking people to call it, their family doctor or Telehealth if they have symptoms or questions.

You can arrange a test in Bancroft, Belleville or Trenton by calling the centre, or in Picton by texting or calling 613-813-6864.

There is a pop-up clinic in Madoc on Friday. You may also qualify for a home test.

Renfrew County is also providing pop-up and home testing under some circumstances. Residents without access to a family doctor can call 1-844-727-6404 to register for a test or 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 1-877-644-4545 if they have symptoms for further assistance.

First Nations:

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's interested in a test can call 613-967-3603 to talk to a nurse. The community's reopening plan that's now underway.

There's a pop-up testing clinic at Pikwakanagan's Makwa Centre Thursday from 9 to 11 a.m. for people who pre-registered by Tuesday evening.

Kitigan Zibi is planning for an Aug. 29 election with changes depending on the status of the pandemic at that time.

For more information

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