COVID-19: Latest developments in the Greater Toronto Area on April 8

Click to play video: 'Non-essential retail must close in-person shopping under new Ontario restrictions' Non-essential retail must close in-person shopping under new Ontario restrictions
WATCH ABOVE: The new provincewide restrictions mean no more shopping at malls as of Thursday. Most non-essential retail will go back to curbside pickup only. Seán O’Shea reports. – Apr 7, 2021

Here are the latest developments on the COVID-19 pandemic in the Greater Toronto Area for Thursday.

Mississauga Hospital RPN dies of COVID-19

A registered practical nurse, who was also a mother of two, died of COVID-19 on Saturday.

Trillium Health Partners confirmed the nurse’s death and said in a statement that she was a “hardworking nurse who had a passion for nursing and making a difference.”

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Global News confirmed the nurse was in her 40s and was a mother of two sons, but did not name her out of the respect for the family.

The Registered Practical Nurses Association of Ontario also released a statement that said she was a nurse for over 13 years.

“This RPN’s untimely death is a tragic loss for Ontario’s nursing community and a terrible reminder of the devastating impacts of COVID-19,” the statement said.

Click to play video: 'Mississauga hospital RPN latest frontline worker to die of COVID-19' Mississauga hospital RPN latest frontline worker to die of COVID-19
Mississauga hospital RPN latest frontline worker to die of COVID-19 – Apr 8, 2021

7 staff members at Vaughan nail salon test positive for coronavirus, 84 customers deemed 'high-risk contacts'

York Region Public Health is warning patrons who visited a nail salon in Vaughan about potential exposure to COVID-19 as seven staff members from the salon tested positive for a variant of concern.

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A public notice from the health unit said it is has identified 84 “high-risk contacts” who visited Nails at Anthony’s, located at 8099 Weston Rd., between March 23 to 26. Those patrons are were asked to self-isolate for 14 days after their visit, closely monitor for symptoms and get tested if those symptoms develop.

The health unit’s notice said the salon did not properly maintain a list of its customers or track the type of services they were provided or the staff who provided the service. Without a proper patron list, health unit staff said it will be difficult to identify high-risk contacts.

As of April 8, seven of the eight staff from the salon had confirmed variant of concern cases of COVID-19. The notice says the staff members worked while they were able to transmit the virus.

The salon closed at 1 p.m. on March 26.

ActiveTO to return summer 2021 including Lake Shore Boulevard West route

The City of Toronto says it has approved the return of the ActiveTO program for pedestrian and bicycle-friendly activities and it will include the popular Lake Shore Boulevard West stretch on select weekends.

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The route was up for debate due to construction taking place at the King-Queen-Queensway-Roncesvalles intersection and The Queensway from Parkside Drive to Roncesvalles Avenue, directly north of Lake Shore Boulevard West.

ActiveTO was first introduced in May in response to COVID-19 and the push to create more opportunities for people to get exercise while increasing the amount of space for physical distancing.

Read more: ActiveTO to return summer 2021 including Lake Shore Boulevard West route

How and where you can currently get a COVID-19 vaccine in Toronto, Peel, York and Durham

As the COVID-19 vaccine supply increases for Ontario, the rollout plan and eligibility criteria has been changing rapidly in recent days.

On Wednesday, the provincial government also announced that it will begin to launch mobile teams to administer vaccines in hot spot neighbourhoods in high-risk congregate settings, faith-based locations, residential buildings, and locations occupied by large employers for individuals aged 18 and older. It is not yet clear when that will begin.

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Premier Doug Ford said if the federal government follows through on forecasted vaccine allocations, 40 per cent of adults will be vaccinated by the time the current four-week stay-at-home order is lifted.

Read more: How and where you can currently get a COVID-19 vaccine in Toronto, Peel, York and Durham

Workplace inspection campaign being launched in Peel, Halton regions

The Ontario government said it is launching a zero-tolerance workplace inspection campaign in COVID-19 hot spot areas, beginning with Peel and Halton regions on Friday.

The inspections will take place at warehouses, food processors and manufacturers.
“With more contagious variants identified in many parts of the province, it has never been more important that businesses have the appropriate health and safety protocols in place to stop the spread of COVID-19,” said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development.

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“We will have zero tolerance for those bad actors who break safety requirements as it puts the lives of workers and the public at risk. Our officers will not hesitate to issue tickets to those not following the rules.”

A “multi-ministry team of provincial officers” will also be inspecting retail outlets that are permitted to be opened under the stay-at-home order such as big-box stores. Violations of COVID-19 safety requirements and violations can result in a fine of $750 for individuals and $1,000 for businesses.

Status of cases in the GTA

Ontario reported 3,295 new coronavirus cases on Thursday.

Of those:

  • 933 were in Toronto
  • 649 were in Peel Region
  • 386 were in York Region
  • 165 were in Durham Region
  • 156 were in Halton Region

Ontario reports nearly 3,300 COVID-19 cases, 19 deaths

Ontario is reporting 3,295 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, bringing the provincial total to 374,112.

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The death toll in the province has risen to 7,494 as 19 more deaths were recorded.

Resolved cases increased by 2,576 from the previous day. The government said 63,846 tests were processed in the last 24 hours.

As of 8 p.m. on Wednesday, the provincial government reported administering 2,726,221 total COVID-19 vaccine doses. That marks an increase of 108,563 vaccines in the last day, a new record as the province administered more than 100,000 vaccines in 24 hours two days in a row. There are 324,148 people fully vaccinated with two doses.

Read more: Ontario reports nearly 3,300 COVID-19 cases, 19 deaths

Cases, deaths and outbreaks in Ontario long-term care homes

According to the Ministry of Long-Term Care, there have been 3,755 deaths reported among residents and patients in long-term care homes across Ontario which did not increase from yesterday. Eleven virus-related deaths in total have been reported among staff.

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There are 49 current outbreaks in homes, which is down by three from the previous day.

The ministry also indicated there are currently 10 active cases among long-term care residents and 119 active cases among staff — up by one for both in the last day.

Cases among students and staff at Ontario schools, child care centres

Meanwhile, government figures show there have been a total of 14,478 school-related COVID-19 cases in Ontario to date — 10,909 among students and 2,410 among staff (1,159 individuals were not identified).

This is an increase of 301 more cases in the last day — 245 student cases and 56 staff cases.

The COVID-19 cases are currently from 1,294 out of 4,828 schools in the province which is 27 per cent of schools. All schools in Toronto, Guelph and Peel Region are closed.

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There have been a total of 4,155 confirmed cases within child care centres and homes — an increase of 152 (89 new child cases and 63 staff cases). Out of 5,282 child care centres in Ontario, 414 currently have cases and 121 centres are closed.

NOTE: This page will be updated throughout the day.

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