With 'alarming surge in COVID-19,' Ontario begins emergency shutdown at midnight

Premier Doug Ford in June 2020

More information about supports being made available to businesses is available at https:// www.ontario.ca/page/businesses-get-help-covid-19-costs.

Ford said the variants of concern are increasing rapidly and that this has become a new pandemic. We are now fighting a new enemy.

Personal care services and restaurants will be forced to close for in person dining.

Indoor gatherings are only allowed with members of the same household while outdoor gatherings are limited to five people and physical distancing must be maintained.

Premier Doug Ford announced that he would be "pulling the emergency break" as a result of rising COVID-19 cases and intensive care admissions.

Indoor and outdoor dining is prohibited.

Prohibiting the use of facilities for indoor or outdoor sports and recreational fitness, including gyms.

Day camps, however, will be closed.

So far, more than 57 million people in the USA have been fully vaccinated.

"OHA President Anthony Dale says in an ideal world, the association would re-deploy the province's vaccine strategy", and bulldoze vaccines into the communities where we know COVID-19 is out of control".

"If things go well and if people continue to follow these public health measures, we will be in a much better position to come out of the lockdown more quickly than others", said Ahmed.

CDC: Fully vaccinated Americans cleared to travel without tests or quarantine periods
These are recommendations and millions of travelers have flown in the last several weeks, according to the TSA. However, the CDC had not made any move to review its guidance that discouraged all non-essential trips.

The rules are slightly more lax for religious, wedding and funeral services in Ontario, however, with indoor events permitted to host up to 15 per cent of a room's capacity.

Health minister Christine Elliott said Toronto and Peel Region remain the most active zones for the virus, with Hamilton and Ottawa also seeing higher local case loads.

Crawley writes that "the only difference between this and the current lockdown provisions now seen in some areas of the province appears to be the closure of patio dining and golf courses, alongside a limit of five people instead of 10 for outdoor gatherings". Essential stores will remain open at 50 percent capacity and non-essential retail, including shopping malls, can operate at 25 percent capacity, reports CTV News Toronto.

Without those measures, the Ontario Science Advisory Table said Thursday, the province could see up to 6,000 new infection cases by mid-April.

As of yesterday, there are now 421 patients in ICU across the province, a record during the pandemic.

The peak of 800 is expected, even if the province implements a stay-at-home order and continues vaccinations.

When the stay-at-home order lifted, the Porcupine Health Unit moved to the orange - restrict level.

Another Ontario-wide shutdown has been confirmed.

The announcement of a third shutdown comes as Ontario reported 421 patients in ICUs on Wednesday, which is the highest number of critical care patients since the beginning of the pandemic.

On the advice of the Chief Medical Officer of Health, all Ontarians are asked to limit trips outside the home to necessities such as food, medication, medical appointments, supporting vulnerable community members, or exercising outdoors with members of their household.

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