In a news release issued on Thursday morning, Solicitor General Sylvia Jones said Ontario still needs the tools to address the COVID-19 pandemic, even as new cases continue to go down and thus announced that the Ontario government has extended its emergency orders once again.
Through the “Reopening Ontario Act (ROA)”, the province announced that it will be extending current COVID-19 emergency orders until September 22 due to the ongoing pandemic.
According to the government, the extensions will give it the ability to address ongoing risks and effects of the virus and to ensure measures remain in place to protect the population.
“We’ve seen great progress in our fight against COVID-19 in recent weeks, but now is not the time to let our guard down,” said the Solicitor General.
“We must continue safely and gradually down the path to recovery while tackling the ongoing effects of this pandemic. We’re conducting an ongoing review and assessment of all orders to determine if they are still necessary and will relax restrictions or lift orders when it is safe to do so.”
The State of Emergency for Ontario, which was declared on March 16 was terminated on July 24 when the ROA came into effect.
Under the ROA, the Ontario government can extend emergency orders for up to 30 days at a time.
The province says it will lift some emergency orders including the one that allowed school boards to redeploy workers to health care facilities to respond to the pandemic.
It was also mentioned there are ongoing reviews to determine which remaining emergency orders are necessary and which orders will be extended.
A list of the following orders under the ROA has been extended until September 22 includes:
- Work Redeployment for Certain Health Service Providers
- Drinking Water Systems and Sewage Works
- Electronic Service
- Electricity Price for RPP Consumers
- Work Deployment Measures in Long-Term Care Homes
- Streamlining Requirements for Long-Term Care Homes
- Prohibition on Certain Persons Charging Unconscionable Prices for Sales of Necessary Goods
- Work Deployment Measures for Boards of Health
- Work Deployment Measures in Retirement Homes
- Service Agencies Providing Services and Supports to Adults with Developmental Disabilities and Service Providers Providing Intervenor Services
- Signatures in Wills and Powers of Attorney
- Use of Force and Firearms in Policing Services
- Temporary Health or Residential Facilities
- Work Deployment Measures for Service Agencies Providing Violence Against Women Residential Services and Crisis Line Services
- Limiting Work to a Single Long-Term Care Home
- Work Deployment Measures for District Social Services Administration Boards
- Deployment of Employees of Service Provider Organizations
- Work Deployment Measures for Municipalities
- Limiting Work to a Single Retirement Home
- Work Deployment Measures for Mental Health and Addictions Agencies
- Congregate Care Settings
- Access to Personal Health Information by Means of the Electronic Health Record
- Certain Persons Enabled to Issue Medical Certificates of Death
- Hospital Credentialing Processes
- Treatment of Temporary COVID-19 Related Payments to Employees
- Management of Long-Term Care Homes in Outbreak
- Management of Retirement Homes in Outbreak
- Special Rules Re: Temporary Pandemic Pay
- Enforcement of Orders
- Stages of Reopening
- Rules for Areas in Stage 1
- Rules for Areas in Stage 2
- Rules of Areas in Stage 3
However, two orders will be exempt from the extension which includes:
- The Education Sector order will end on August 31, 2020.
- The Limitation Periods order will end and suspended time periods will resume running on September 14, 2020.
Ontario’s COVID-19 Update: Province Reports 76 New COVID-19 Cases As System Issue Misses 11 Public Health Units
On Thursday morning, Ontario health officials reported only 76 new cases of COVID-19, however, an issue with the province’s data system meant that the latest numbers did not include data from 11 local public health units.
The 11 public health units not included in Thursday’s case count are from Algoma, Brant County, Chatham-Kent, City of Hamilton, Niagara Region, Peterborough, Simcoe Muskoka District, Southwestern, Sudbury & Districts, Timiskaming and Windsor-Essex County.
Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott said all 11 public health units on Wednesday reported only eight cases among them and that could be an indication for roughly how many cases may be under-reported on Thursday.
“This glitch is another reminder of why it’s so important that we replace the outdated iPHIS with our custom-built COVID-19 system,” Elliott said. “We’re making great progress: in fact, all 11 impacted units are transitioning to the new system today, at which point 31 of 34 PHUs will be using it.”
The provincial total now stands at 41,048 cumulative cases.
The death toll in the province has risen to 2,793 as one new death was reported.
Meanwhile, 37,291 Ontarians have recovered from COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, which is 90 percent of known cases. Resolved cases increased by 76 from the previous day.
Ontario has completed 2,682,845 tests so far for the virus. This is up 25,917 tests from the previous day. There are 22,104 people currently under investigation awaiting test results.
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