What you need to know about COVID-19 in Ottawa on Sunday, May 9
Key updates on COVID-19 in the region
- Ottawa reported 143 new COVID-19 cases Sunday and two new deaths.
- Show mom you love her from a safe distance today, experts urge.
- Free rapid COVID-19 tests coming to small, medium-sized businesses.
What's the latest?
Ottawa Public Health (OPH) reported 143 new COVID-19 cases and two more deaths on Sunday. Another 36 cases and three deaths were logged in western Quebec.
Today is Mother's Day, and while many Ottawans might want nothing more than to give their mom a big hug, public health officials are urging people to show their love from afar.
Ottawa's board of trade is hoping to soon get free rapid COVID-19 tests into the hands of small- and medium-sized businesses, but there are questions about the timing of the rollout.
WATCH | Keep your Mother's Day celebrations virtual again this year, OPH says:
How many cases are there?
As of Sunday, 25,363 Ottawa residents have tested positive for COVID-19. There are 1,448 known active cases, 23,392 resolved cases and 523 deaths.
Public health officials have reported more than 46,200 COVID-19 cases across eastern Ontario and western Quebec, including more than 43,000 resolved cases.
Elsewhere in eastern Ontario, 180 people have died. In western Quebec, the death toll is 205.
Akwesasne has had more than 670 residents test positive and 10 deaths between its northern and southern sections.
The transfer of COVID-19 patients from other regions to Ottawa hospitals continues. As of the most recent update Friday, there were 32 COVID-19 patients from other communities in Ottawa ICUs.
What can I do?
People should only leave home for essential reasons like getting groceries, seeking health care and exercising. They should stay within their immediate area and province unless it's absolutely necessary to leave.
The vast majority of gatherings are prohibited. Exceptions include small activities with households and small religious services.
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.
Take a bike ride or a stroll on one of <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/OttCity?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#OttCity</a>'s many pathways or trails this weekend! But stay <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/COVIDWise?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#COVIDWise</a>!<br>Other outdoor recreation options are impacted by the Stay-at-Home order.<br>Learn more and avoid disappointment: <a href="https://t.co/xmRWzhW3Ka">https://t.co/xmRWzhW3Ka</a> <a href="https://t.co/wWtGp3w8sv">pic.twitter.com/wWtGp3w8sv</a>—@ottawacity
Premier François Legault has said the situation is critical in Gatineau and is asking people there to only leave home when it's essential.
Schools, gyms, theatres, personal care services and non-essential businesses are closed until Monday across the Outaouais.
Private gatherings are banned, except for a person who lives alone seeing one other household. Distanced outdoor exercise is allowed in groups up to eight people.
The curfew is from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m.
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 leave their immediate area for essential reasons — under threat of a fine if they go to a yellow or green zone.
Some rules start to loosen Monday: elementary schools can reopen across the region, while the curfew moves later and high schools and non-essential businesses reopen in Vallée-de-la-Gatineau and Papineau.
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.
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.
More than 870,000 doses have been given out in the Ottawa-Gatineau region since mid-December, including about 395,000 doses to Ottawa residents and about 170,000 in western Quebec.
The province has opened up appointments for people age 18 and up in Ottawa's K1T, K1V and K2V "hot spot" postal codes.
Outside the provincial system, Ottawans in the city's priority neighbourhoods above age 18 and Indigenous people above age 16 can check for eligibility and pop-up clinics online with the city.
Six Ottawa pharmacies in hot spots will be offering Moderna vaccines.
Some time this week, people as young as age 40 are expected to be able to book through the province. Eligibility is also expected to include a wider range of health conditions and job types, such as transit and grocery store employees.
People who qualify can make an appointment online or over the phone. Pharmacists there have started giving shots with appointments through the province.
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.
Take some time this weekend to show appreciation for the incredible impact that our mothers have had on our lives.<br><br>Although we are unable to gather in-person with those outside our immediate household, consider connecting virtually or over a phone call. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/MothersDay2021?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#MothersDay2021</a> ❤️ <a href="https://t.co/Tus1Vbx8JF">pic.twitter.com/Tus1Vbx8JF</a>—@RCDHealthUnit
In eastern Ontario:
Anyone seeking a test should make an appointment. Check with your health unit for clinic locations and hours.
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, their contacts and people who have been told to get tested.
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.