Visits opened up for long-term care homes

If you are fully immunized against COVID-19 you can hug your loved one living in a long-term care home again.

Ontario has announced that changes are being made because the majority of residents have been vaccinated.

That means communal dining, activities including indoor and outdoor events, and gatherings can begin again.
All residents, regardless of their immunization status, may also leave their homes on an essential absence, which includes outdoor exercise, buying groceries, or visiting the pharmacy, while the Stay-at-Home order is in place.
Essential absences are not permitted when a resident is symptomatic, has been identified as a COVID-19 case or a contact, or as directed by local public health.

A look at the local numbers …

Public Health Sudbury & Districts has declared another COVID-19 outbreak at Health Sciences North.

According to the release, the outbreak is at Health Sciences North’s Ramsey Lake Health Centre affecting the sixth floor in the south tower.
The agency states it is working with the hospital to investigate the outbreak and ensure patients and staff members are protected.

The agency is also reporting ten new cases of COVID-19, nine in Sudbury and one in the Sudbury District.

Considering resolved cases, there are 86 active cases in the agency’s jurisdiction.

Health Sciences North states there are 27 admitted patients, 14 confirmed as positive cases and 13 waiting for test results.

Of the 27, nine people are in intensive care.

Algoma Public Health is reporting a decrease with 28 active cases and one person in hospital.

 

No triage needed

Our province may have avoided a situation where hospitals would have to choose who would receive medical treatment and who would not.

A government memo to hospitals says forecasts show the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations, especially intensive care cases, appears to be peaking and they no longer expect to have to implement triage procedures.

The number of patients being treated in intensive care remains just below the 900-case threshold where such decisions would have to be made.

 

Online learning could be a permanent option

On-line learning will be offered to students across the province during the next school year and parents will have until June 1st to make their decision.

Education Minister Stephen Lecce says they’ll also be consulting with parents and educational groups to see whether this might become a permanent option.

He adds the government will be paying an extra 561-million dollars next year to help school boards deal with pandemic-related costs.

Schools remain closed under the province’s stay-at-home order, which is due to last until the May long weekend.