The COVID REPORT for March 18-2021

Northern Credit Union in Thessalon closed due to possible COVID exposure

Algoma Public Health has advised of possible exposure to COVID-19 at the Thessalon Northern Credit Union Branch at 186 Main Street.

The agency has defined the exposure as low-risk but advises anyone who visited the location on March 11 and 12 to self-monitor for symptoms.

The Northern Credit Union stated it is working in close contact with Algoma Public Health Unit and as a precautionary measure, is restricting member access to their Thessalon branch until further notice.

The temporary closure of the Thessalon branch will be evaluated on an ongoing basis and the public will be notified when the branch is re-opened.


Algoma COVID-19 immunization rollout continues

Algoma Public Health says it is continuing with Phase One of the provincial roll out of COVID-19.

There are immunization clinic sites in place in municipalities and First Nation communities across the district, operated by numerous health partners.

The agency states residents of Algoma long-term care homes and First Nation elder care lodges have received first and second doses of COVID-19 vaccine, and overall, resident uptake of the two-dose COVID-19 vaccine is over 90%.

Adults aged 80 and over and indigenous adults aged 55 and over have begun to receive immunization, as well as priority groups in First Nation communities across Algoma.

Based on new provincial allocations to Algoma expected in the weeks of March 22nd and 29th, the agency says provincial priority groups will be able to start receiving vaccine in the coming two weeks:

*   Very high priority health care workers, both hospital-based and community-based

*   Adult recipients of chronic home care, including those who are homebound. Planning for mobile immunization teams is under way.
Adult recipients of chronic home care who are homebound may follow the instructions of their nearest clinic<> to learn how to access immunization.

*   Immediate household members of Indigenous adults aged 55 and over, regardless of status or Indigenous identity,

Based on the recommendations of the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI), the provincial government is extending the interval between first and second doses of COVID-19 vaccines to 16 weeks or 112 days.  This is to increase the number of people who can benefit from a first dose of vaccine in the context of a limited COVID-19 vaccine supply.  Residents of long-term care homes, retirement homes, and elder care lodges will continue to receive vaccine at 21 to 28-day intervals.


A look at the local COVID numbers

There are 25 new cases of COVID-19 in the City of Greater Sudbury according to Public Health Sudbury & Districts.

Nearly all are related to outbreaks or close contact with other positive cases.

There are now seven facilities considered outbreak sites in the city, and with resolved cases, there are now 242 active cases within the agency’s jurisdiction.

Health Sciences North has three outbreaks in various areas of the hospital, which they state are contained.

The hospital is reporting 54 admitted patients with 21 positives and the rest awaiting results.

Of the 54, six are now in intensive care.

Algoma Public Health is reporting two new cases of COVID-19, one from Sault Ste. Marie and area and one from Central & East Algoma.

The agency has 21 active cases of which three are people who live outside the agency’s jurisdiction but are being treated by local health staff.

One person is currently hospitalized.


Vaccines and the U.S. government

The White House is confirming that U-S President Joe Biden is in talks with several countries about supplying them with extra vaccine, once there are enough doses in the U-S and Bloomberg News reports
Canada and Mexico are at the top of his list.

However, a spokesperson says deliveries are not imminent.

America expects to have enough vaccine for its entire population by the end of May, after export restrictions were put in place.

In Ottawa, federal officials say two-million doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are due to arrive in Canada next week from the company’s plants in Europe.


COVID and compliance

Businesses appear to be finally on board with the province’s COVID-19 restrictions.

Labour Minister Monte McNaughton says 70 per cent of businesses visited in follow-up inspections this week were in compliance with rules like physical distancing, capacity, and mask-wearing.

That’s 20 points higher than last week.

McNaughton says most of the recent inspections were at smaller businesses that were required to close during the recent lockdown.

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