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107 cases of COVID-19 across EOHU jurisdiction as second dose opportunities ramp up

As of Friday, June 4, there were 107 active cases of COVID-19 among residents of the jurisdiction of the Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU).

There were five COVID-19 patients in hospital across the EOHU’s territory and three of those patients were in intensive care as of Friday.

The number of deaths due to COVID-19 across EOHU jurisdiction had increased to 106 as of June 4.

Reopening

The Ontario government has announced a progressive “roadmap” to reopen the province that will depend on vaccination rates and case numbers. The first step in the process is tentatively to begin on June 14. However, Premier Doug Ford has indicated that step one could begin sooner if conditions are favourable.

EOHU Medical Officer of Health Dr. Paul Roumeliotis said on June 3 that public health authorities are closely watching any effect the Delta COVID-19 variant originating in India could have on reopening.

The checkpoints and ban on non-essential traffic entering Ontario has been extended to June 16.

Roadmap to Reopen outlines three steps to easing public health measures, guided by the following principles:

  • Step One An initial focus on resuming outdoor activities with smaller crowds where the risk of transmission is lower and permitting retail with restrictions. This includes allowing outdoor gatherings of up to 10 people, outdoor dining with up to four people per table and non-essential retail at 15 per cent capacity.
  • Step Two Further expanding outdoor activities and resuming limited indoor services with small numbers of people where face coverings are worn. This includes outdoor gatherings of up to 25 people, outdoor sports and leagues, overnight camps, personal care services where face coverings can be worn and with capacity limits, as well as indoor religious services, rites or ceremony gatherings at 15 per cent capacity.
  • Step Three Expanding access to indoor settings, with restrictions, including where there are larger numbers of people and where face coverings can’t always be worn. This includes indoor sports and recreational fitness; indoor dining, museums, art galleries and libraries, and casinos and bingo halls, with capacity limits.

The province will remain in each step for at least 21 days to evaluate any impacts on key public health and health system indicators. If at the end of the 21 days, the following vaccination thresholds have been met, along with positive trends in other key public health and health system indicators, then the province will move to the next step:

  • Step 1: 60 per cent of adults vaccinated with one dose.
  • Step 2: 70 per cent of adults vaccinated with one dose and 20 per cent vaccinated with two doses.
  • Step 3: 70 to 80 per cent of adults vaccinated with one dose and 25 per cent vaccinated with two doses.

The previous colour-coded regional green, yellow, orange, and red levels of measures have been discontinued in Ontario. The new approach of gradual reopening based on low cases and high vaccination rates will apply to the entire province instead of having different rules for different regions.

On June 3, Roumeliotis said guidelines are being developed for when masks will no longer be required for vaccinated individuals.

Ontario statistics

There were 914 new, active cases of COVID-19 across Ontario as of June 4. According to calculations based on statistics from the Ministry of Health, there were 9,459 active cases of COVID-19 across Ontario as of Friday.

There were 687 COVID-19 patients in hospital across Ontario as of Friday. Out of those patients, 522 were in intensive care, and 357 patients were on ventilators.

There had been 8,820 deaths due to COVID-19 across Ontario as of June 4, which was an increase of 19 deaths from June 3.

Vaccinations

As of June 4, 115,839 COVID-19 vaccine doses had been administered across the jurisdiction of the EOHU, which meant that 69.4 per cent of residents had received at least one dose.

Across Ontario, 9,6612,327 vaccine doses had been administered, and 896,065 Ontario residents had been fully vaccinated by receiving both required doses as of June 4.

According to Roumeliotis, there are 120,000 appointments for second doses available across the EOHU’s territory to the end of August. Just two per cent of the regional population had both doses as of June 3.

The EOHU is presently contacting people who did not receive a second dose appointment when they had their first dose. Across Ontario, everyone is now able to book a second dose appointment for a time sooner than when they were originally to have one.

Appointment booking is available directly through the provincial booking system at www.Ontario.ca/bookvaccine. Individuals who require assistance with booking can call the Provincial Vaccine Information Line at 1-888-999-6488.

Appointments can be made by an individual or with the help of someone. If you know someone who is part of an eligible group, please encourage them to get vaccinated. Those needing assistance with booking or getting to their COVID-19 vaccine appointment should visit our website to access local supports.

As of 8 a.m. on Monday, June 7, 2021, individuals turning ages 70 and over in 2021, as well as individuals who received their first dose of an mRNA vaccine (Pfizer and Moderna) on or before April 18, 2021, will be eligible to schedule an appointment to receive their second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine at a mass immunization clinic through the provincial booking system and call centre.

Beginning on June 4, 2021, these groups are eligible to receive their accelerated second dose appointment through pharmacies and primary care settings participating in the vaccine rollout. There are now nearly 450 additional pharmacies across Ontario offering the Moderna vaccine.

The province will continue to accelerate second doses for all Ontarians based on when they received their first dose, as well as on the availability of vaccines. All Ontarians are encouraged to get vaccinated as soon as they can, and to receive their second dose as soon as they are eligible to ensure maximum protection against COVID-19.

Standby list

To avoid vaccine wastage by ensuring as many individuals as needed are available to receive remaining doses at the end of a clinic, the Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU) is now extending the eligibility criteria for the standby list to individuals aged 18 or older who have not yet been able to book an appointment to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

Institutional outbreaks

As of Tuesday, June 1, there were zero COVID-19 outbreaks at long-term care facilities, hospitals, retirement residences, and group home facilities under EOHU jurisdiction.

School closures

All schools in Ontario have switched to learning online for the rest of the school year.

EOHU COVID-19 case map, June 4, 2021

Map: Eastern Ontario Health Unit.

 

 

James Morgan

James Morgan is a freelance contributor. He has worked for several print and broadcast media outlets. James loves the history, natural beauty, and people of eastern Ontario and western Quebec.

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