E-newsletter- April 16, 2020
I hope you are well and coping with the challenges we are facing during this unprecedented crisis.
I want to thank you for continuing to practice physical distancing. While physical distancing is the right thing to do to defeat COVID-19, supporting one another is the most important thing we can do to keep our community and province strong.
My constituency office staff are available by phone at 416-259-2249 and emails to [email protected]. We are here to support you as information is changing daily, even hourly.
Please look after yourselves, best wishes for good health and patience as we navigate through these unprecedented times.
Christine Hogarth, MPP
For the latest information, please visit:
Telehealth: 1-866-797-0000 and https://covid-19.ontario.ca/
Stay home except for essential reasons, such as:
- Access health care services;
- Shop for groceries (please shop alone, if you are able);
- Pick-up medication at the pharmacy;
- Walk pets or get exercise; and
- Support vulnerable community members.
EXTENDING THE DECLARATION OF EMERGENCY
On the advice of the Chief Medical Officer of Health and with the approval of the Ontario legislature, the Ontario government is extending the Declaration of Emergency under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act for a further 28 days.
This will allow the government to continue to use every tool at its disposal to protect the health and safety of the people of Ontario during the COVID-19 pandemic. Since we first learned of COVID-19, Ontario has actively monitored the situation and continues to act decisively to contain the spread of COVID-19. Although the actions we have taken to-date are making a difference, the spread of COVID-19 remains a serious threat and we must keep up our efforts to contain it. These measures will remain in place until May 12, at which time they may be extended. Learn more
LONG-TERM CARE ACTION PLAN
Long-term care homes in Ontario are facing an unprecedented situation. Long-term care homes have become the front-line of the fight against COVID-19 around the globe. Ontario is no different, and in our grief, we must fight back fiercely.
The COVID-19 Action Plan for Protecting Long-Term Care Homes consolidates actions taken to date and adds aggressive new measures to prevent further outbreaks and deaths from COVID-19 in our long-term care homes. This will help strengthen our prevention and containment efforts that are being taken within 48 hours.
Through this targeted action plan, our Government is ramping up:
Ø Aggressive testing, screening, and surveillance
Ø Outbreak management and the spread of disease
Ø Growing our heroic long-term care workforce, as fast as possible
Please know that every option is on the table and additional measures will be taken as we address this fast-changing pandemic.
ONTARIO JOBS AND RECOVERY COMMITTEE
We need to start planning for the recovery phase, which will begin as soon as the outbreak is contained. To begin this work, the Premier has asked Minister Phillips to chair the Ontario Jobs and Recovery Committee.
This team will work together to design the next steps in Ontario’s Action Plan, with a focus on supporting workers, families and businesses in the medium term, and economic growth and job-creation in the long-term. We were confident in Ontario’s future before COVID-19, and we remain confident today.
PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT
The Government has secured more than 13 million surgical and procedural masks, 200,000 N95 respirator masks and 38 ventilators over the last five days to ensure that patients, frontline health care workers and first responders have the critical equipment and supplies they need to protect themselves during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Same-day deliveries of supplies and equipment are being sent to hospitals, long-term care and retirement homes and other facilities to support essential workers in all settings and ensure supplies are expedited to those most in need.
A special thank you to Alberta! Alberta has committed to send Ontario 250,000 N95 masks, 2.5 million surgical masks, 15 million surgical gloves, 87,000 safety goggles and 50 ventilators.
ONTARIO TOGETHER - update
The Premier reported that we received over 14,000 submissions to the Ontario Together portal. Thank you to Ontario's manufacturers, entrepreneurs and innovators for offering to provide essential supplies and equipment to support front line workers.
We understand that COVID-19 has imposed significant financial pressure on working parents and we need to support our parents who may be facing reduced income or layoffs during the COVID-19 outbreak by ordering any child care operators currently charging fees without delivering child care service, to no longer do so. The order also means that parents cannot lose their child care space because they are not paying fees during this period. Learn more
We also know that the child care sector, like many others, is facing significant financial pressures. If you are a Child care provider, you can seek supports for businesses under the Federal Government’s Economic Recovery Plan.
INCREASED COVID-19 TESTING
The Government has implemented the next phase of Ontario’s strategy to significantly expand and enhance COVID-19 testing by proactively testing several priority groups. We expect to double the number of tests processed each day to 8,000 by April 15 and 14,000 by April 29, at which point overall lab capacity will have been further expanded.
The province has re-established same-day testing results, which are now conveniently accessible to patients through a new user-friendly online portal. This portal will help ease pressure on public health units and frontline workers, allowing them to focus their efforts on combating COVID-19.
We have expanded the capacity of public health units to conduct contact tracing and case management, both of which are critical to stopping the spread of the virus, by enabling the use of volunteers, including retired nurses and medical students.
CAN I HELP
If you are a retired, non-active, internationally educated or a student in health care, please visit: Healthcare matching portal
GET INVOLVED, NEED HELP #ONTARIOSPIRIT
The Government is partnering with SPARK Ontario to help seniors and the most vulnerable stay connected and healthy as they self isolate during the COVID-19 outbreak. Volunteers help to deliver food or medicines, run errands or check-up on seniors and the most vulnerable by phone or email while they self-isolate. Visit: https://www.sparkontario.ca/
High school students have started an initiative called The Beating Heart Project. This project is a way of saying thank you to all the healthcare workers who are sacrificing a lot to protect us right now during COVID-19. All you have to do is to cut out (or print) a heart, write a message of gratitude and stick it on your front door. More details can be found on the website: http://tinyurl.com/beatingheartproject
RNAO invites Ontarians to show their support of those heroes keeping us all safe, while keeping in mind social distancing. At 7:30pm each night step out onto your porch, balcony, or open a window and make some noise. Take a short video of yourself banging some pots and pans, singing a song, applauding, or honking your horn, and share it on social media.
Post your cheering-up activity on social media with the tag @RNAO and using the hashtags #TogetherWeCanDoIt, #Cheer4HealthWorkers, #EtobicokeLakeshore
211’s telephone helpline and website provide a gateway to community, social, non-clinical health and related government services. Its online service can help find priority services available in your area more easily, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, in more than 150 languages.
Living with diabetes? COVID-19 brings extra questions and worries. Here are some resources for you:
Ask the Experts – video answers by medical professionals to common questions
Demandez aux Experts – answers in French to commonly asked questions
Diabetes Canada COVID-19 resources
Mental health support, we've added resources to improve access to telephone, online and virtual supports. Learn more
ESS Support Services for seniors continues to provide direct service delivery, through respite, 24/7 Caring Centre, telephone outreach, wellness check-ins and transportation for food access and medically-essential appointments.
They can be reached by phone at (416) 243-0127 or email at [email protected]
ESS has begun a grocery porch-drop initiative to support the clients of Stonegate Community Health Centre. As the period of self-isolation continues, we encourage ESS clients who need help with groceries to reach out, please visit: https://www.esssupportservices.ca/
Online Music Festival Friday, April 24th at 7pm.
Home Music Festival is a free, local and resident-run festival bringing music into the homes of Humber Bay Shores and Toronto. Residents can participate in the event at home and on any device, streamed through Facebook Live. The live stream will be available at https://www.facebook.com/HomeMusicFestHB. For more info visit: https://www.homemusicfest.com