Anniversary of pandemic
Flags at various government buildings across Canada are flying at half-mast today, as we mark a national Day of Observance to commemorate those lost to COVID-19.
It was one year ago today that the World Health Organization declared the virus a pandemic.
Since the first cases emerged in China 15 months ago, more than 118-million people around the world have contracted COVID-19, with 2.6-million deaths.
Here in Canada, there have been almost 900-thousand infections, with 22-thousand deaths.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is asking us to mark the day by reflecting on the significant impacts everyone has felt due to COVID-19, from isolation and unemployment, to losing time with friends and family.
A look at the local numbers –mass vaccination underway in Elliot Lake, one death in Sudbury
An Elliot Lake senior was first in line at the mass vaccination clinic set up in Elliot Lake.
The clinic opened at the Collins Hall yesterday morning with resident Archie Adams being the first citizen 80 years of age and over to receive the vaccine.
There were 331 vaccinations administered yesterday and more coming today.
Algoma Public Health is reporting four active cases with one person remaining in hospital.
Public Health Sudbury & Districts is reporting one death due to COVID-19.
The agency extends their condolences to the family and state there will be no further information released.
The unit is also reporting 13 new cases of the virus, 10 of them testing positive for variants.
Considering resolved cases, this brings the number of active cases to 211.
All 13 cases are in the Greater Sudbury area with most attributed to close contacts and/or outbreak.
Health Sciences North says it has eight admitted patients, two with positives and the others waiting for results.
None are in intensive care.
The man in charge of coordinating the rollout of Canada’s vaccine distribution says the country is ready to significantly ramp up its inoculation programs.
Major-General Deny Fortin says he led a large rehearsal with all provincial and territorial governments this week, and everyone is prepared for an increasing supply of vaccines.
Fortin says Canada has firm commitments for more than 36-million doses of vaccine by the end of June.
Expert advice has approved a delay between the first and second shots of up to 16 weeks…so Fortin says every adult who wishes to be immunized should be able to receive their first inoculation by Canada Day.
Over a million and counting
More than a million Ontarians have now received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and Premier Doug Ford says we could see 150-thousand vaccinations a day once mass immunization clinics begin later this month.
A province-wide booking and information system is due to open on March 15th, with seniors 80 and older receiving priority at first.
However, several health units plan to use their own systems, and some are already booking appointments.
More than 300 pharmacies in Toronto, Windsor-Essex, Kingston, and Frontenac-Lennox-and Addington regions will be offering COVID-19 vaccinations, starting next week, to those between the ages of 60 and 64.
The pilot project will use the 194-thousand doses of AstraZeneca vaccine that have just arrived since they’re due to expire on April 2nd.