COVID-19 Government and International Response: April 9, 2020

What to Know

Globally there have been 1,536,979 cases of COVID-19 reported, up from 1,464,852 at this time yesterday. Canada reported 20,682 cases today. Canada’s caseload trajectory is doubling every 3-5 days, which Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam says is a positive trend when compared to other countries.

Ontario now reports 5,759 cases in the province, up from 5,276 cases of COVID-19 yesterday. The province has now tested 88,698 individuals and reports 1,208 tests are currently under investigation.

Canada Post announced changes to Canada’s Postal Service during COVID-19, including hours of service, social distancing measures and delivery.

Federal

Federal health officials have released COVID-19 modelling, revealing by the end of next week Canada could have nearly 32,000 cases and between 500 and 700 deaths. A series of models were used to generate a number of scenarios including three key scenarios: ‘no control’, ‘weaker controls (delay and reduce the peak)’, and ‘stronger epidemic control’. Even with stronger epidemic control, resulting in between 2.5% and 5% of the population infected (934,000 and 1.9 million cases), as many as 22,000 Canadians could die of the disease. Without any containment measures, up to 300,000 Canadians could die.

The Public Health Agency of Canada says that if we are successful, continued public health measures will be required over time to manage future waves, including:

  • Physical distancing
  • Hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette
  • Restrictions on international and domestic travel
  • Case detection and isolation
  • Quarantine of contacts and incoming travellers

In his daily address, Prime Minister Trudeau said he could not predict how long these measures would be in place, but said “this will be the new normal until a vaccine is developed.” CBC reports some experts estimate a vaccine may not be developed for 6-18 months.

Provincial

A frustrated Premier Ford called Ontario’s low COVID-19 testing rate unacceptable. The Toronto Star reports: former Toronto public health chief Dr. David McKeown came aboard last week to lead a table of experts reviewing and scrutinizing major public health measures.

While the Province has upped its testing capacity to process 13,000 samples per day, the number of tests completed has fallen from more than 6,000 tests on April 1, to a low of 2,568 on Tuesday. The Premier told reporters yesterday: My patience has run thin. No more excuses. It’s unacceptable…We need to start doing 13,000 every single day. I want to see every single long-term care facility tested, every patient…I want to see every front-line health-care worker in this province tested.

This afternoon the Premier called on urban residents across the province to steer clear of cottage country this long weekend. Many mayors in Ontario’s small and rural communities have expressed concern about grocery and health care shortages if urban residents continue to flock to these communities. More information here.

Toronto

The City of Toronto and the Toronto Region Board of Trade are partnering on a bi-weekly Business Insights Questionnaire to stay current on specific pain points and relief measures needed now and in a post-COVID-19 recovery period. This builds on recent consultation work both organizations have done in the past few weeks.

Toronto’s Caribbean Carnival (formerly known as Caribana) has joined the ranks of cancelled festivals for this year due to COVID-19. In a letter, the Board of Directors said: Taking into consideration the mass crowds that attend the events present a tremendous risk regarding the spread of the virus. It is therefore unanimous that the priority must be the health and safety of our patrons and having weighed all these considerations, there is no choice but to cancel this year’s festival.

International

Country Total cases at 3:30 p.m. Total cases yesterday at 3:30 p.m. Increase from previous Cases per million Total recovered Total deaths
Global 1,536,979 1,464,852 72,127 186.14 344,467 91,783
Canada 20,682 19,162 1,520 544.56 5,206 503
United States 455,243 417,206 38,037 1,381.38 24,723 16,095
China 81,865 81,802 63 58.39 77,370 3,335
India 5,865 5,274 591 4.31 478 169
Italy 143,626 139,422 4,204 2,384.09 28,470 18,279
Spain 152,474 146,690 5,784 3,237.21 52,165 15,353
Germany 115,738 110,483 5,255 1,391.93 39,529 2,461
United Kingdom 65,077 60,733 4,344 914.16 7,097
Brazil 16,238 14,049 2,189 76.83 173 824
Chile 5,972 5,546 426 312.55 1,274 57
Iran 67,286 67,286 807.45 32,309 4,110
Australia 6,109 6,024 85 238.03 2,987 51