Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Thursday April 8, 2021

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Thursday, April 8, 2021:

  • There have been 370,817 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 3,215 cases from the previous day. There have been 335,983 people recovered from the virus while 7,475 have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 12,905,286 of which 41,624 have pending results.
  • Canada’s coronavirus case total is 1,028,041. The country has 23,173 deaths from the virus – one in the Yukon, four in Nunavut, 1,491 in British Columbia, 2,002 in Alberta, 445 in Saskatchewan, 943 in Manitoba, 7,475 in Ontario, 10,709 in Quebec, 31 in New Brunswick, six in Newfoundland & Labrador and 66 in Nova Scotia.
  • The Eastern Ontario Health Unit area added 48 cases on Wednesday – 16 in Prescott-Russell, 10 in SD&G, 18 in Cornwall and four in Akwesasne – to bring the regional total to 3,614 confirmed cases, of which 432 are active (31 more than Tuesday) and 3,099 resolved (17 more than Tuesday). There are 83 deaths to date. Thirty-seven people are in hospital (three more than Tuesday) and 10 in the ICU (one more than Tuesday). There are 16 active institutional outbreaks (one fewer than Tuesday). Testing is up 696 to 125,796. The breakdown of cases is: Prescott-Russell 1,476 cases (183 active), SD&G 875 cases (111 active), Cornwall 986 cases (127 active) and Akwesasne (ON/QC) 277 cases (11 active).
  • The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit added 13 cases Wednesday to bring the regional total to 1,335 confirmed cases, of which 77 are active (three more than Tuesday) and 1,204 are recovered (10 more than Tuesday). There are 54 deaths to date. Seven people are in hospital (one more than Tuesday), four in ICU (one more than Tuesday) with two on a ventilator (no change from Tuesday). There are two active institutional outbreaks (Kemptville District Hospital and Rideau Ferry Country Home). The community case breakdown is: Lanark County East 277 cases (23 active), Lanark County West 351 cases (11 active), Leeds-Grenville Central 117 cases (one active), Leeds-Grenville East 222 cases (32 active) and Leeds-Grenville West 150 cases (eight active).
  • Vaccines: Ontario 2,726,221 (+104,382, last update April 7); EOHU 28,280 (last update April 7, +707 from previous update April 6); LGL 21,932 individuals with at least 1 shot (last update April 6, +3,564 from previous update March 29).
  • Premier Doug Ford announced a state of emergency for Ontario and a stay-at-home order for four weeks, starting today (Thursday). Non-essential businesses must close and are only able to provide curbside pickup or delivery between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. Big box stores are only allowed to sell essential items, including groceries, pet care supplies, cleaning supplies, pharmaceuticals, health care and personal items. People have to stay at home, except for school, work that can’t be done at home, health care services like doctor’s appointments or getting vaccinated, exercise or picking up essentials.
  • The LGL District Health Unit is warning it sees a “significant” increase in cases in areas close to Ottawa, driven by variants of concern. In the past week-and-a-half, there have been 41 new cases in eastern Leeds-Grenville and 33 in eastern Lanark County. The health unit says a high proportion of those are the B117 U.K. variant – 34 per cent in Leeds-Grenville East and 17 per cent in Lanark East.
  • The first batch of N95 respirators have rolled off the assembly line at the 3M plant in Brockville. About 700,000 masks are being shipped this week. The provincial and federal governments spent nearly $24 million each as part of a five year deal with 3M, signed in August, to supply 55 million masks each year.
  • Keep first and second vaccine shots four months apart. The National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) is sticking by its earlier recommendation. But based on increased supply of vaccine, it doesn’t expect it to be that long in the future.
  • A Windsor manufacturer will be cranking out 12 million bottles of Clorox Pine-Sol multi-surface cleaner and disinfectant over the next year. It’s also adding 14 jobs. The government, which is spending $850,000 from the Ontario Together Fund to allow the company to increase production, says the cleaner is proven to kill SARS-CoV-2 – the virus that causes COVID-19.
  • Akwesasne has postponed court proceedings until mid-May due to the so-called “emergency brake” and subsequent stay-at-home order. The proceedings were originally scheduled for April 14 and will now be heard on May 12.
  • The Upper Canada school board announced positive cases associated with Kemptville Public School and Bridgewood Public School in Cornwall. Both cases were not at the school while infectious, officials say. Bridgewood already went full remote learning as of yesterday because of staffing shortages.
  • Around 20 per cent of people in B.C. who are eligible to get the vaccine have got it, according to health officials. Close to 947,000 doses have been administered.
  • Alberta will be shutting down indoor dining starting Friday. That’s after the province clamped down on retail capacity and indoor fitness on Tuesday.
  • The Biden administration is concerned about the number of older Americans who are not getting the vaccine. About 76 per cent of those older than 65 have received at least one dose but the number of new people booking appointments is drying up.
  • Another Leger survey shows Canadians and Americans are split on the idea of a vaccine passport. Of those asked, 52 per cent of Canadians support the idea while 33 per cent are against it. In America, the support is 43 per cent and those against it are 36 per cent.

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