Windsor Regional Hospital is expanding the number of hours that our COVID-19 Assessment Centre is open to accommodate high volumes of individuals seeking a swab test for COVID-19. Starting today, weekday hours are now 9am to 9pm while hours on Saturday and Sunday remain 9am to 4pm. You can locate the COVID-19 Assessment Centre beside the Emergency Department.
Non-essential and elective medical services will soon be offered again locally with new measures in place to reduce the spread of COVID-19, the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit announced today. You can read the article here.
The total number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Windsor-Essex is now 920 with 63 deaths.
The government of Ontario has extended all emergency orders under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act until June 9, 2020. This includes the closure of outdoor playgrounds, play structures and equipment, public swimming pools and outdoor water facilities, as well as bars and restaurants except for takeout and delivery. Additionally, restrictions remain on social gatherings of more than five people, and staff redeployment rules remain in place for long-term care homes and congregate settings like retirement homes and women's shelters.
The provincial government announced today that effective immediately the government will begin the takeover of five long-term care homes that have been particularly hard hit by COVID-19. These include Eatonville Care Centre, Hawthorne Place Care Centre, Orchard Villa, Altamont, and Holland Christian-Grace Manor.
The government is deploying six teams of inspectors to each of the five homes highlighted in the Canadian Armed Forces report, as well as the Camilla Care Community Center in Mississauga. Each home will undergo an expanded and rigorous inspection and monitoring process for a period of two weeks. At least one inspector will stay in each of the target homes for the entire period to watch over the residents and staff. The inspection will include in-depth interviews with staff and residents, reviews of charts and records, random spot checks of high-risk homes and full report-back plans of the findings.
Our caucus recognizes that more action is needed to fix the long-standing crisis in our long-term care homes, which is why, for weeks, we have been calling on the Government to go beyond internal inspections and initiate a full, transparent public inquiry.
Commenting on the scathing reports released by the Canadian Armed Forces on the state of long-term care homes in Quebec and Ontario, the Prime Minister said he will be urgently discussing the public health crisis unfolding in congregate care settings with provincial premiers tomorrow. He reassured Canadians that the federal government will provide all necessary support to manage the situation on the ground.
Long-term care homes in Quebec and Ontario have been particularly hard hit by COVID-19 and account for over 80% of all virus casualties across the country. Both provincial reports point to three major challenges in the facilities, including staffing shortages, management of personal protective equipment and how hot zones related to the novel coronavirus were handled.
The Prime Minister also noted that as more and more Canadians return to work, fewer people will need the help of the CERB introduced earlier. However, he reaffirmed the wage subsidies will continue. The Prime Minister also confirmed that the federal government is continuing its discussions with the provinces and territories as well as major labour groups and stakeholders to see which support programs should be extended, phased out or modified as the country prepares to reopen the economy.
Continue to look after yourselves by following the advice of our medical professionals. Remember to wash your hands, social distance from other people, and wear your mask in public.