What you need to know about COVID-19 in Ottawa on Monday, May 17
Key updates on COVID-19 in the region
- Ottawa is reporting 77 new COVID-19 cases Monday and one death.
- It gave out its most vaccines ever on Saturday.
- All Ontarians age 18 to 39 can make a vaccine appointment tomorrow morning.
- Non-essential businesses in western Quebec can reopen today.
What's the latest?
Ottawa Public Health (OPH) has confirmed another 77 COVID-19 cases Monday and one death.
A new daily record of 9,792 vaccine doses were given in the capital Saturday and the wider region has passed the million-dose mark.
Ontario is lowering its vaccine booking age to 18 Tuesday morning at 8 a.m., earlier than expected for people age 18 to 29. People who are turning 18 this year are also eligible.
Non-essential businesses and secondary schools in Gatineau, Que., and the rest of the Outaouais that had been closed since earlier this spring can reopen as of today.
The region is in the red zone, with a curfew that now also starts later at 9:30 p.m.
How many cases are there?
The region is coming down from a record-breaking peak of the pandemic's third wave, one that has included more dangerous coronavirus variants.
As of Monday, 26,111 Ottawa residents have tested positive for COVID-19. There are 1,066 known active cases, 24,509 resolved cases and 536 deaths.
The transfer of COVID-19 patients from other regions to Ottawa hospitals continues. As of the most recent update Friday, there were 22 COVID-19 patients from other communities in Ottawa ICUs.
Public health officials have reported more than 47,500 COVID-19 cases across eastern Ontario and western Quebec, including more than 44,900 resolved cases.
Elsewhere in eastern Ontario, 183 people have died. In western Quebec, the death toll is 208.
Akwesasne has had more than 680 residents test positive and 10 deaths between its northern and southern sections.
What can I do?
People should only leave home for essential reasons like getting groceries, seeking health care and exercising in their immediate area.
The vast majority of gatherings are prohibited. Exceptions include small activities with households and small religious services.
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Most non-essential businesses can only offer curbside pickup. Access to malls is restricted and big-box stores can only sell essential items.
Gyms and personal care services are closed, while restaurants are only available for takeout and delivery.
Western Quebec is entirely under red zone rules.
High schools, gyms, theatres, personal care services and non-essential businesses are now able to reopen across the Outaouais, albeit with restrictions.
The curfew is now in place from 9:30 p.m. until 5 a.m.
Private gatherings remain banned, except for a person who lives alone seeing one other household.
Small religious services are allowed and people can go to theatres. Older secondary school students will be going to classrooms every second day. Distanced outdoor exercise is allowed in groups up to eight people.
People can't travel to yellow or green zones or risk a fine.
Distancing and isolating
This means it is important to take precautions now and in the future like staying home while sick — and getting help with costs if needed — keeping hands and surfaces clean and maintaining distance from anyone you don't live with, even with a mask on.
OPH says residents should wear masks outside their homes whenever possible.
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Health Canada recommends older adults and people with underlying medical conditions get help with errands.
Four COVID-19 vaccines have been deemed safe and approved in Canada.
Canada's task force said first doses offer such strong protection that people can wait up to four months to get a second.
About 1,030,000 doses have been given out in the Ottawa-Gatineau region since mid-December, including about 470,000 doses to Ottawa residents and more than 210,000 in western Quebec.
Ontario's general vaccination age is 40 and older. Other factors such as jobs and health conditions also qualify younger adults. People can book provincial appointments online or over the phone at 1-833-943-3900.
That province is lowering the general age to 18 tomorrow at 8 a.m.
Appointments are available through the province for people age 18 and up in Ottawa's three "hot spot" postal codes, Indigenous adults and, through the city, Ottawans in more than 20 "priority" neighbourhoods.
A handful of Ottawa pharmacies in hot spots are offering a limited supply of Moderna vaccines to people age 18 and up.
We are making great progress in <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/KFLA?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#KFLA</a>. To date, 90% of our residents 60 years of age and older have received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine. Thank you for doing your part to keep you and your loved ones safe! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/VaccinateKFLA?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#VaccinateKFLA</a> <a href="https://t.co/iXW9dlxwL2">pic.twitter.com/iXW9dlxwL2</a>—@MOHKFLA
The province plans to reach children as young as 12 in June.
People who qualify can make an appointment online or over the phone. There are currently no walk-in options.
Symptoms and testing
COVID-19 can range from a cold-like illness to a severe lung infection, with common symptoms including fever, a cough, vomiting and loss of taste or smell. Children tend to have an upset stomach and/or a rash.
If you have severe symptoms, call 911.
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In eastern Ontario:
Anyone seeking a test should make an appointment. Check with your health unit for clinic locations and hours.
Ontario recommends only getting tested if you fit certain criteria, such as having symptoms, exposure or a certain job.
People without symptoms but who are part of the province's targeted testing strategy can make an appointment at select pharmacies.
Travellers who need a test have very few local options to pay for one.
In western Quebec:
Tests are strongly recommended for people with symptoms and their contacts.
Call 1-877-644-4545 with questions, including if walk-in testing is available nearby.
First Nations, Inuit and Métis:
First Nations, Inuit and Métis people, or someone travelling to work in a remote Indigenous community, are eligible for a test in Ontario.
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.
Tyendinaga's council is asking people not to travel there to camp or fish.
Inuit in Ottawa can call the Akausivik Inuit Family Health Team at 613-740-0999 for service, including testing and vaccines, in Inuktitut or English on weekdays.
For more information
- Ottawa Public Health.
- Your Eastern Ontario Health Unit.
- The Ontario Ministry of Health (in several languages).
- The Centre intégré de santé et de services sociaux de l'Outaouais.
- The Public Health Agency of Canada.