Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Thursday April 9, 2020

A home on Jean Street in South Stormont on Saturday, April 4, 2020 attempts to lighten the mood for people during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston)

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Thursday, April 9, 2020:

  • There have been 5,276 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 550 cases (or 11.6 per cent) from the previous day. There are 2,074 people recovered from the virus while 174 people have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 84,601 of which 1,102 have pending results.
  • Canada’s confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 case total is 19,289. The country has 435 COVID-19 related deaths – 48 in British Columbia, 29 in Alberta, three in Saskatchewan, three in Manitoba, 174 in Ontario, 175 in Quebec, two in Newfoundland & Labrador and one in Nova Scotia.
  • Cornwall, SD&G and Prescott-Russell added two more positive COVID-19 cases to its tally on Wednesday, bringing the total number of cases to 47 (previously 45).
  • Medical Officer of Health Dr. Paul Roumeliotis says Cornwallites aren’t getting the message to practice physical distancing and to stay at home. He says there are reports of kids playing in playgrounds together and unnecessary shopping. Read more here.
  • A favourite Costco location for SD&G shoppers has reportedly had two employees test positive for COVID-19. In an internal staff memo obtained by Viva-Media, the workers at the Vaudreuil-Dorion, Que. store completed their last shifts on March 31 and April 3. The company hasn’t responded to the news outlet’s request for comment.
  • The Brockville region is reporting four more deaths in the health unit area, bringing the total number to eight. Seven of those deaths have been in long term care homes while the eighth death was in the community. The counties of Leeds, Grenville and Lanark now have 123 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19.
  • Premier Doug Ford says the number of COVID-19 tests being performed right now – about 3,500 a day – is “unacceptable.” Ford says if labs are capable of performing 13,000 tests per day then they should be performing that number daily. The premier says he’s going to be like a “dog on a bone” over increased testing because “we owe it” to Ontarians, especially front line health care workers and emergency responders.
  • The province is speeding up construction of health care buildings, whether they’re hospitals, additions to hospitals or assessment centers. The government is lifting time constraints, meaning construction workers can work any time of the day or night. These projects will be temporarily exempt from noise bylaws.
  • The federal government won’t be a strict with its proof of lost revenue for the federal wage subsidy program. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says employers will only have to show a 15 per cent decline in March – not 30 per cent – and the comparison will be to the previous months, not the previous year. Trudeau also announced the federal government will cover 100 per cent of wages for students under the Canada Summer Jobs Program.
  • Toronto has cancelled its Caribbean Carnival – formerly known as Caribana – which would have happened in late July through early August.
  • A man from British Columbia, originally charged with break and enter and theft, is now facing charges of assaulting police. The 24-year-old is accused of coughing in their faces on purpose during his arrest.
  • The epicenter of novel coronavirus – Wuhan, China – is bustling again with cars and people as officials there ended a two-and-a-half month lockdown. Schools are still closed and people are encouraged to wear face masks.

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