Windsor-Essex reported three new cases of COVID-19 today. One case is close contact of a confirmed case, one is community acquired, and the third case is under investigation. This brings up the local total to 2,767 cases with 54 active cases. Ontario reported 704 cases of COVID-19 today, as compared to 658 cases yesterday and 805 cases on Saturday.
We have been receiving numerous complaints about getting COVID-19 tests scheduled in a timely manner. My staff made some phone calls today to the four Shoppers Drug Mart locations that have COVID-19 testing. Most of the stores are reporting a 4-5 day turnaround for testing. There are no same day bookings at any of the Shoppers Drug Mart locations, and each store has different booking policies:
- 3100 Howard Ave (Devonshire Mall) - 519 969-4523. You can only book 24 hours in advance, starting at 10:00AM each day. If you have not reached them by 10:30AM, you are not likely to get in for the next day, and will have to try the next day starting at 10:00AM to book for the next 24-hour period.
- 7720 Tecumseh Rd E - 519 945-2371 – This location is booking up to 7 days in advance.
- 1760 Huron Church - 519 253-5653 – There are no restrictions on how far out they will book.
- 600 Ouellette Ave - 519 254 -2505 - Appointments are being booked at least 7 days out but there are no restrictions in terms of how far they will book at this time.
As a reminder, individuals must meet the following criteria to be tested at a local Shoppers Drug Mart:
- Must be asymptomatic and have not been in contact with someone who has COVID-19 AND must also fall under one of these five categories:
- Living, working in or visiting a long-term care facility.
- Residing or volunteering at a shelter.
- Have been given a clearance for international travel.
- An international student travelling into the country to start school after the 14-day isolation period ends.
- An Indigenous person.
We are looking into this issue, and if you’re experiencing delays in getting a COVID-19 test scheduled, please email my office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Ministry of Long Term Care admitted the government knew over the summer that the system was short as many as 6,000 personal support workers (PSWs) – yet the government is still trying to save a buck by allowing devastating understaffing in nursing homes to continue. That came in a ministry staff member’s testimony to the commission on long-term care, the transcripts of which were posted over the weekend. Over this past weekend alone, at least 55 more seniors across the province living in long-term care became infected with COVID-19, and as of Sunday, 79 homes were experiencing outbreaks. Our caucus is proposing a complete overhaul and significant investment for long-term care and home care. Among other changes, we are calling for a staff-to-resident ratio that guarantees every resident 4.1 hours of hands on care per day.
My colleague, MPP Wayne Gates, questioned in the Legislature today why the Government is not releasing information on which Ontario employers have COVID-19 outbreaks in their facilities. Workers in Ontario have the right to know their workplace is safe. Yet this government will not disclose when or where COVID-19 outbreaks happen in workplaces. This not only puts workers’ health and safety at risk, it increases the risk of community spread. It removes a critical piece of information we need to find COVID-19 hotspots and stop the spread. Gates’ question follows a Toronto Star report, which used WSIB claim data to pinpoint which employers had the most COVID-19 related compensation claims. Health and safety advocates say that the lack of transparency and reporting puts workers at risk. The Toronto Board of Health has also passed a motion urging the release of information regarding COVID-19 outbreaks in workplaces including the employer's names.
The federal government announced today that the U.S.-Canada border will be closed for another 30 days until November 21st.
Please continue to listen to public health experts and wash your hands frequently, practice physical distancing of 2 metres apart, and wear a mask when physical distancing is not possible and where otherwise required.