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HPEPH Encourages Residents to Prepare for Potential Spread of COVID-19

Hastings and Prince Edward Counties/March 2, 2020 – As cases of COVID-19 have now been detected in a number of countries around the world, Hastings Prince Edward Public Health (HPEPH) is preparing for the possibility that the virus could spread further.

Measures put in place to date have been effective in containing the spread in Canada, and while the current risk to Canadians remains low, this could change very rapidly.  HPEPH is working with national, provincial, and local health care partners to contain COVID-19. However, as more cases emerge across the province, there is a strong possibility that this virus could emerge locally.   

“HPEPH is encouraging local residents to ensure they are prepared to self-isolate for two weeks in the event that they, or someone in their home, become ill with COVID-19”, says Dr. Piotr Oglaza, Medical Officer of Health and CEO at HPEPH. “If an individual is asked to self-isolate to prevent the spread of COVID-19, they will be asked to stay in their home and limit contact with others.”

HPEPH recommends that residents take four basic steps to ensure they are prepared for a potential COVID-19 outbreak in the community:

Ensure you are prepared

  • Ensure you have enough supplies and essentials to stay in your home for up to 2 weeks

Make a contingency plan

  • Make plans to ensure care for your dependants in the event you become ill or are asked to self-isolate

Know the risks

Practice good infection control procedures

For more information and detailed recommendations, please visit HPEPH’s Outbreak Preparedness web page.

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Media Contact:
Emily Tubbs, Communications Specialist
613-966-5500 x 464 or 613-848-2398           
etubbs@hpeph.ca

About Hastings Prince Edward Public Health

Hastings Prince Edward Public Health (HPEPH) is a public health agency that serves the counties of Hastings and Prince Edward from four local offices. We monitor the health of our local population, deliver programs and services within our communities, and help develop healthy public policies. We provide information and support in many areas to help improve the health and well-being of our residents. Together with our communities, we help people become as healthy as they can be. For more information, please visit hpePublicHealth.ca. You can also find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.

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COVID-19 VACCINES IN HPEPH

Individuals turning 12 and over in 2021 are currently eligible to book a first dose appointment. Individuals aged 70 and over as well as anyone who received their first vaccine on or before April 18th are now eligible to book their second dose on an accelerated schedule. To book, visit Ontario.ca/bookvaccine or call  1-833-943-3900.

There is currently a high demand for vaccination appointments in our region. If no appointments are available, please follow us on Facebook or Twitter to be notified when new clinic dates are added. Please do not call HPEPH to book. For more information, please visit  hpePublicHealth.ca/vaccine-booking/

If you attended a clinic and did not receive an email copy of your vaccination receipt you can download a copy off the provincial booking site at Ontario.ca/bookvaccine.

PHARMACY-BASED VACCINATIONS

Individuals 18 and over can also receive their vaccination at participating local pharmacies. Select pharmacies are also offering vaccinations to youth aged 12 – 17. Please visit covid-19.ontario.ca/vaccine-locations for location and registration information.

CURRENT RESTRICTIONS IN HPEPH

Based on the provincewide vaccination rate and continuing improvements in key public health and health system indicators, the Ontario government, in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, will move the province into Step One of its Roadmap to Reopen at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, June 11, 2021. For more information, read the media release.

While the provincial Stay at Home Order has been lifted, public health precautions must be maintained. Close contact must be limited to those within your household. Outdoor gatherings are limited to 5 people, and distancing must be maintained. For more information, visit our COVID-19 page.

POTENTIAL EXPOSURE TO COVID-19?

If you are concerned about potential exposure to a positive case of COVID-19, please be reassured that any contacts of a confirmed case will be contacted directly and monitored by public health.

Low-risk and indirect contacts should self monitor for symptoms for 14 days from the time of potential exposure and seek testing if symptoms develop. Low risk contacts do not need to isolate unless symptoms develop, and can continue to attend school/work/daycare while monitoring for symptoms.