Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Saturday October 10, 2020

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Saturday, October 10, 2020:

  • There have been 57,681 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 939 (or 1.7 per cent) from the previous day. There are 49,032 people recovered from the virus while 2,997 people have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 4,306,025 of which 58,173 have pending results.
  • Canada’s coronavirus case total is 178,117. The country has 9,585 deaths from the virus – 245 in British Columbia, 282 in Alberta, 24 in Saskatchewan, 30 in Manitoba, 2,997 in Ontario, 5,936 in Quebec, two in New Brunswick, four in Newfoundland & Labrador and 65 in Nova Scotia.
  • There were nine more cases Friday in the Eastern Ontario Health Unit region Friday, bringing the total to 325 confirmed positive cases. Of those, 83 are active cases and 230 are resolved. Two people are in hospital (EOHU has a website error that says three hospitalized). There have been 12 deaths to date and two active institutional outbreaks (one in Embrun and a new outbreak at Residence Prescott-Russell in Hawkesbury). Testing numbers increased by 618 to 67,422. The breakdown of cases is: Prescott-Russell 220 cases (62 active), SD&G 69 cases (14 active) and Cornwall 36 cases (seven active). (The next update is the afternoon of Tuesday, Oct. 13)
  • The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit region remained at 402 confirmed cases on Friday. There were still seven active and 343 recovered. The breakdown is: Leeds-Grenville East (three active), Leeds-Grenville Central (one active), Leeds-Grenville West (two active), Lanark County West (one active) and Lanark County East (zero active). Fifty-two people have died during the coronavirus crisis. (The next update is Tuesday, Oct. 13 at 4 p.m.)
  • The hot spot areas of Ottawa, Toronto and Peel and moving to a modified Stage 2 for at least 28 days. Bars and restaurants in those areas will be closed to indoor dining. Gyms, health clubs, casinos and cinemas are also being closed indoors. The new restrictions went into effect at 12:01 a.m. this morning. Wedding receptions are being allowed to go ahead this long weekend but will be suspended Tuesday. Banquet halls are now limited to 10 indoor and 25 outdoors.
  • The Eastern Ontario Health Unit won’t be following the restrictions imposed in Ottawa – at least not yet. Local Medical Officer of Health Dr. Paul Roumeliotis says they are “keeping a close eye on the local spread” but “at this time we feel that business closures aren’t necessary.”
  • In addition to the hot spot announcement, the province also urged people across Ontario to stay home except for essential purposes. You should limit trips to essential tasks, such as work, school, grocery shopping, medical appointments and outdoor physical activity, the government said on Friday.
  • Premier Doug Ford announced that $300 million has been made available for businesses affected by the closures in the hot spot areas to cover fixed costs. It will include waiving of provincial and municipal taxes, as well as hydro and natural gas bills, the premier said.
  • Dr. Adalsteinn Brown, dean of Dalla Lana School of Public Health, says COVID-19 cases are growing at an alarming rate. Ontario’s current positivity rate is over two per cent. The case growth has been primarily in indoor settings where people are not masked all the time and are in close proximity to others. Brown says schools are safe.
  • The federal government has revamped its rent relief program and expanded a loan program for businesses. The commercial rent-relief program will cover up to 65 per cent of eligible expanses. It’s up to 90 per cent for those in lockdown areas. As for wage subsidies, the government will cover up to 65 per cent until the end of December.
  • Ottawa is going to put double the amount of money toward food banks. Another $100 million is going into the Emergency Food Security Fund, the prime minister announced Friday, which will go to organizations like Food Banks Canada and the Salvation Army to meet the demand brought on by the second wave.
  • The World Health Organization reported the highest daily yet of new coronavirus infections on Friday at more than 350,000.

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