Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Saturday September 12, 2020

(Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston, File)

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Saturday, September 12, 2020:

  • There have been 44,068 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 213 (or 0.5 per cent) from the previous day. There are 39,598 people recovered from the virus while 2,813 people have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 3,245,837 of which 31,384 have pending results.
  • Canada’s coronavirus case total is 135,626. The country has 9,163 deaths from the virus – 213 in British Columbia, 253 in Alberta, 24 in Saskatchewan, 16 in Manitoba, 2,813 in Ontario, 5,774 in Quebec, two in New Brunswick, three in Newfoundland & Labrador and 65 in Nova Scotia.
  • One case in Prescott-Russell was added Friday to bring the regional total to 207 confirmed positive cases in the Eastern Ontario Health Unit area. Of those, 19 are active and 176 are resolved. There are no people in hospital and there are 12 deaths to date. Testing increased by 735 to 45,618. The breakdown of cases is: Prescott-Russell 134 cases (12 active), SD&G 45 cases (six active) and Cornwall 28 cases (one active).
  • The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit region saw no changes in COVID-19 stats on Friday. There are 366 lab-confirmed cases, of which 313 have recovered. There have been 52 deaths to date.
  • With public health nurses in schools, the two Eastern Ontario health units say they are working closely with local school boards to minimize transmission of COVID-19. Eastern Ontario Health Unit Medical Officer of Health Dr. Paul Roumeliotis says “it’s possible that we may see some cases of COVID-19 at our local schools” but parents should be assured that there’s a plan to quickly identify, trace and isolate students with viral symptoms.
  • The Ontario government has launched a web page for COVID-19 cases in schools and daycare centers. The page, which you can find here, will be updated weekdays.
  • The federal government is putting nearly $14 million over the next year for Toronto Public Health to set up a voluntary self-isolation center. It will have 140 rooms for people who live in crowded housing conditions where it’s difficult to self-isolate, in order to stop the increased risk of spreading the virus.
  • In Alberta, people can sing and play wind instruments indoors again. The activities are limited though and precautions have to be in place.
  • The prime minister and Canada’s chief public health official responded to accusations Friday that the government didn’t act quickly enough between January and March before the pandemic happened. Justin Trudeau says the government acted as soon as it heard of a mysterious pneumonia-like illness in China on New Year’s Eve. Conservative health critic Michelle Rempel Garner has called for the health minister to be fired.
  • The premiers meeting that was supposed to take place in Quebec City later this month has been cancelled. Premier Francois Legault hopes the event can be held at a later date.
  • Children are less likely than adults to get severe cases of COVID-19, according to the latest data compiled by the Public Health Agency of Canada. Hospitalizations for kids and teens was 1.4 per cent for 10,500 while it was 13.5 per cent for 85,000 covering all ages.
  • Transport Minister Marc Garneau says Canada’s largest airlines have agreed to new contact tracing rules and will ask for and collect emails and phone numbers of passengers on domestic flights.

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