Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Wednesday April 7, 2021

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Wednesday, April 7, 2021:

  • There have been 367,602 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 3,065 cases from the previous day. There have been 333,576 people recovered from the virus while 7,458 have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 12,855,397 of which 29,173 have pending results.
  • Canada’s coronavirus case total is 1,020,893. The country has 23,141 deaths from the virus – one in the Yukon, four in Nunavut, 1,489 in British Columbia, 2,001 in Alberta, 443 in Saskatchewan, 942 in Manitoba, 7,458 in Ontario, 10,701 in Quebec, 30 in New Brunswick, six in Newfoundland & Labrador and 66 in Nova Scotia.
  • The Eastern Ontario Health Unit area added 25 cases on Tuesday – 18 in Prescott-Russell, four in SD&G and three in Cornwall – to bring the regional total to 3,566 confirmed cases, of which 401 are active (41 fewer than Monday) and 3,082 resolved (65 more than Monday). There are 83 deaths to date (one more than Monday). Thirty-four people are in hospital (four fewer than Monday) and nine in the ICU (no change). There are 17 active institutional outbreaks (two more than Monday). Testing is up 1,574 to 125,100. The breakdown of cases is: Prescott-Russell 1,460 cases (173 active), SD&G 865 cases (105 active), Cornwall 968 cases (113 active) and Akwesasne (ON/QC) 273 cases (10 active).
  • The variants of concern (VOCs) currently make up 66 per cent of cases in the Eastern Ontario Health Unit area. The region’s top doctor says the rate of VOC growth is “outpacing our capacity to vaccinate” and the region needs a full lockdown “circuit breaker” with a stay-at-home order in order to get ahead. Public Health Ontario shows there are now 338 confirmed variant cases in the EOHU area – all but one are presumed to be the B117 so-called U.K. variant.
  • The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit added 16 cases Tuesday to bring the regional total to 1,322 confirmed cases, of which 74 are active (six more than Monday) and 1,194 are recovered (10 more than Monday). There are 54 deaths to date. Six person are in hospital (two more than Monday), three in ICU (no change) with two on a ventilator (one more than Monday). There are two active institutional outbreaks (Kemptville District Hospital and Rideau Ferry Country Home). The community case breakdown is: Lanark County East 272 cases (20 active), Lanark County West 349 cases (10 active), Leeds-Grenville Central 117 cases (one active), Leeds-Grenville East 215 cases (31 active) and Leeds-Grenville West 150 cases (nine active).
  • Vaccines: Ontario 2,621,839 (+76,199, last update April 6); EOHU 27,573 (last update April 6, +324 from previous update April 5); LGL 21,932 individuals with at least 1 shot (last update April 6, +3,564 from previous update March 29).
  • Premier Doug Ford has hinted that further measures above what’s already in place under the shutdown may be coming. Medical Officer of Health Dr. Paul Roumeliotis says he’s part of a chorus of health officials who believe a stay-at-home order needs to be added as well as “closing some more non-essential businesses and those type of things.”
  • People who are 60 years old and older (born 1961 or earlier) in the Eastern Ontario Health Unit area can book their vaccine appointments on the provincial site starting at 8 a.m. today (Wednesday, April 7).
  • The Eastern Ontario Health Unit will be holding 12 vaccine clinics across the region next week. After that, Medical Officer of Health Dr. Paul Roumeliotis says there will be eight clinics over the following four weeks administering around 1,000 needles. The health unit expects to inoculate 33,000 people over that time.
  • With three pharmacies in the EOHU region offering the AstraZeneca vaccine and looking for better coverage around the region, Roumeliotis says he’s trying to get Cornwall and Ingleside drug stores into the list of those offering the vaccine.
  • Four schools in Prescott-Russell have been closed due to “operational challenges” associated with COVID-19. Roumeliotis says it’s “not because schools are not safe.” As for the upcoming spring break, the doctor adds that children should be not taking part ins “sleepovers or play dates.”
  • Three more Upper Canada school board schools have positive cases. Rockland District High School, Roxmore Public School in Avonmore and South Branch Public School in Kemptville all have at least one positive case. The board says there was no school exposure associated with the Roxmore case because the person wasn’t there while infectious. Contact tracing is underway in the other two cases. Schools are running normally. UCDSB now has active cases in 18 schools and the board office, according to its website.
  • Cornwall’s Bridgewood Public School is moving to remote learning starting today (April 7) for the rest of the week. The change was announced in a letter to parents from Principal Jennifer Perry. While the school only has one active case, it’s short staffed. Bridgewood plans for students to be back in class after the spring break on April 19.
  • Both Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Premier Doug Ford are maintaining a Team Canada approach about working together despite recent sniping in the public forum about the vaccine rollout.
  • Gyms in Quebec’s red zones will be forced to close Thursday and high school students will go on a rotation of in-person and remote learning next week. The move reverses a decision last month by Premier Francois Legault.
  • The Ottawa manufacturer of a rapid COVID-19 test is seeking creditor protection. Spartan Biosceince is restructuring and has paused shipments due to an issue with its system that’s not safety-related.
  • Restaurants Canada and the Ontario Restaurant Hotel and Motel Association say sudden indoor and outdoor dining closures have cost the industry up to $100 million across the province. They’re looking for compensation.
  • Nova Scotia will welcome travellers of Newfoundland and Labrador today (Wednesday). It could be the second step to reforming the so-called Atlantic bubble after the province allowed New Brunswickers last month to come and go without an isolation period.

Have a story or news release related to COVID-19? Send it along for possible inclusion in a future digest on Cornwall Newswatch. Email editor@cornwallnewswatch.com. Please put “COVID-19 Digest” in the subject line.

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