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OTTAWA –
Ottawa’s top doctor predicts the city will move into the COVID-19 red zone in the next week, which means tighter restrictions on gatherings and local businesses

“We now expect that the provincial red zone restrictions will apply within the next week,” said health officer Dr Vera Etches told reporters Tuesday

Etches said she was speaking to the provincial chief health officer, Dr David Williams, late Tuesday afternoon

“My conversation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health is that I believe we are red. We have crossed the red threshold and will remain in red”

Ottawa is currently in the “Orange-Restrict” zone. A change to “Red-Control” would not mean a complete lockdown, but this means stricter restrictions on bars and restaurants (10 people indoors, four per table), indoor and outdoor gatherings as well as the closure of other businesses such as cinemas

The rate of people who positively rest for COVID-19 was over 40 per 100 for four consecutive days000 and thus crossed the provincial threshold for the red zone. The positivity rate in the city is now 25 percent

“This means we’ve had too many transmission situations where people are in close contact,” Etches said

The province’s process of getting the city red will take time The province usually announces new restrictions on public health units on Fridays The changes are due to go into effect the following Monday. Etches said the timetable should be set by the province, but she said Ottawa residents should act accordingly now

“For now, we should consider ourselves in a red situation where the COVID level is higher in our community and we need to limit our close contacts more,” she said

“Waiting for an official change doesn’t help when we know today that if we can reduce the COVID transmission in our community, we will have less work to shut it down and blush again

Answering a question in French, Mayor Jim Watson said he was disappointed that Ottawa was in this situation

“When the province says Ottawa is red, it will certainly be difficult for small businesses, especially restaurants,” he said in French. “It’s not good news for small businesses, but it’s better than a lockdown or the gray area.” / P>

In the past few days, transmission rates of COVID-19 in Ottawa have increased, according to data from Ottawa Public Health

The main monitoring indicators are the rate of new cases per 100000 residents in the past seven days, the average percentage of people who tested positive for COVID-19 in the past week, and the reproductive number, which is the average number of secondary illnesses caused by a single infected person

The red control threshold is a weekly incidence rate of 40 or more cases per 100000 people, a positivity rate of 25 percent or more, and a reproductive number of 12 or more

The rate per 100000 people rose over 40 for the first time on Saturday and has increased daily The positivity rate reached 25 percent on Monday The reproductive number remains below the threshold for the red zone but is above 1 for most of March

While the number of active cases in Ottawa is not an official measure of determining the status of the red zone, it rose steadily over the month, peaking on Jan. March a low of 487 people with known active cases It is now at 620

“We look at the volume of positives screened for the variant and test the positive for the variant. Not confirmed by genetic sequencing, but positive on this screen,” she said

To date, Ottawa has seen 14 confirmed cases of B, 117 variant and two confirmed cases of B.1,351 variant, but according to the province, 180 cases were tested positive for an indefinite VOC at the time of reporting on Tuesday

“During the month of March we started seeing this increase in VOCs, this curve is increasing in our community,” added Etches. “What we do know is that it is increasing and the rate of increase is greater than the rate among the non- VOCs “

An Ottawa attorney and special event organizer pleads for more time in the orange zone

Michael Wood, owner of Ottawa Special Events, told Newstalk 580 CFRA’s “Ottawa Now with Kristy Cameron” that he would call an emergency meeting with Ottawa Public Health

“I spoke to someone at OPH and they asked me to broadcast exactly what we want to see,” he said. “I will meet with key stakeholders in the city to come up with a proposal that may limit the time in which we are red (or) red If we can take these precautions and go forward and bring those numbers down within the week, maybe we can have a different rating “

Wood says he also met with the Small Business Secretary Wednesday, saying he wants Ottawa health officials to give Ottawa at least another week to write down the numbers

“Give us one more shot Let’s get the message across that there’s a lot at stake here and hopefully people will commit and maybe we can’t blush,” said Wood. “If we blush I’d like to do it for as long as possible see “

Wood believes public health and people’s safety are a priority, but he knows this will be another achievement for local businesses

“It’s going to take an adverse toll. We’ve only been in orange for a month and the restrictions are going to be very tough this time,” he said. “Public health comes first, I’m 100 percent on this side, but I think we have to come up with something other than putting ourselves in red. There is a psychological burden that comes with it “

Limits to rites or ceremonies in worship, including wedding and funeral services, where physical distance can be maintained (applies to any location other than a private home):

Constellations and patrons gathering outside of the venues managed by the venue; 2 meters distance and face covering required

Verification of patrons is required as directed by the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health

Personal protective equipment, including eye protection, required when a worker is within 2 meters of another person who is not wearing a face covering

Increase the distance between customers to 3 meters in areas with weights or exercise equipment, as well as in training and fitness classes

No spectators are allowed, but anyone under the age of 18 can be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian

Activities where people are likely to come within 2 meters of each other are not permitted No contact for team or individual sports allowed

Visitors are only allowed to stay in the facility for 90 minutes unless they are engaged in sports

Limit the music volume so low that normal conversation is possible Measures to prevent both instructors and members of the public from shouting

Verification of patrons is required as directed by the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health

Verification of patrons is required as directed by the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health

The deals need to be passively checked for customers (ex B. Signs outside the store front advising not to enter if you have symptoms of COVID-19)

Constellations and patrons gathering outside of the venues managed by the venue; 2 meters distance required inside and outside; Face covering also required while in line

Verification of patrons is required as directed by the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health

Verification of patrons is required as directed by the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health

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Source: https://ottawa.ctvnews.ca/ottawa-to-move-into-covid-19-red-zone-within-a-week-etches-1.5349463