Jonathan Cartu Reports: COVID-19 live updates: Public health department heading to …

COVID-19 live updates: Public health department heading to ...

Jonathan Cartu Reports: COVID-19 live updates: Public health department heading to …

Good morning, Gazette readers. This liveblog will be updated throughout the day with the latest coronavirus-related news.  Please send questions or comments to [email protected]

People who think they have symptoms of COVID-19 should call Quebec’s hotline at 1-877-644-4545.

11 cases of COVID-19 in Montreal, all linked to travel

There are now 11 cases of COVID-19 in Montreal and two patients are in intensive care.

Public health officials are expecting an increase in cases from people who travelled outside the province during March break, said Mylène Drouin, director of Montreal’s public health department.

All cases are linked to travel, she said.

Dental appointments cancelled for two weeks

Quebec’s dentists have been ordered to cancel all non-urgent appointments for the next two weeks because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dental office employees are notifying patients that appointments are cancelled for the next 14 days.

“We have put a sign on the door saying the clinic is closed and are phoning patients,” one employee said.

Patients who need emergency treatment due to an infection, acute pain or trauma can still be seen.

They should call their dentist to arrange for treatment, says the Ordre des dentistes du Québec.

Don’t cancel blood donation appointments, agencies say

Blood donors who have booked appointments should not cancel them in order to prevent shortages, Canadian Blood Services says.

There has been a spike in appointment cancellations in several Canadian cities because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Patients depend on these lifesaving donations,” Dr. Isra Levy said. “They are needed for patients undergoing surgery and cancer treatment, as well as to save lives following traumas such as motor vehicle accidents.”

Canadian Blood Services is responsible for blood donations outside of Quebec.

In this province, Héma-Québec is asking new and existing donors to help maintain the blood supply for patients.

International flights to be rerouted to four Canadian cities

Some international flights will be rerouted to Montreal, Toronto, Calgary or Vancouver, CTV news reports.

This is being done to make sure the airports have capacity to properly screen for COVID-19.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will release details Monday afternoon, CTV news says.

Daycare for children of emergency workers

Health-care workers who are vital in fight against the coronavirus can send their children to free daycare centres that are being opened across the province.

The daycare centres and babysitting services are also available to ambulance technicians, police officers, firefighters and other essential service employees.
Information about the daycares can be found here. Employees must register their children before dropping them off at a daycare.

Quebec has asked the English Montreal School Board to open daycares in eight schools to provide childcare for the children of healthcare workers and other essential services employees.

The eights schools are close to hospitals, CIUSSS’ and other medical facilities.

The schools are St-Gabriel, Bancroft, Pierre Elliott Trudeau, Dante, Westmount Park – St-John Bosco south campus, St-Monica, Elizabeth Ballantyne and Cedarcrest.

Principals have been contacting daycare personnel asking them to work. Only principals, secretaries and janitorial staff are allowed in the buildings.

Meanwhile, many Montrealers are working from home today, leaving commuter trains and metro cars empty.

Food bank reaches out for help

Moisson Montréal needs at least 85 volunteers to continue operating and distributing food to 250 community partners. It’s also asking for more donations, saying local food banks will be busier than ever.

The organization provides food to 567,000 people each month. Donations are needed because children will not be able to have school lunches for two weeks.

“There will be a loss of revenue so families will turn to food banks, the organization says.

Employees and volunteers will be screened to make sure they or a family member haven’t been outside Canada in the past 14 days.

The Sun Youth Organization will continue to offer its emergency services throughout the COVID-19 crisis by appointment only.

The organization will continue to offer its food bank, medication and fire program with reduced staff and volunteers.

Sun Youth will increase its home delivery if needed.

All sports and recreation programs have been suspended indefinitely.

Public health at the airport

The city of Montreal and its public health department will send employees to Trudeau airport Tuesday to inform new arrivals they must self-isolate for 14 days, Radio-Canada reports.

They also want to educate people about steps to take if they develop symptoms of COVID-19. Travellers will be met by employees after they exit customs.

There are now 39 cases of COVID-19 in the province.

Mayor Valérie Plante will hold a press conference at 10 a.m. Monday to announce the new measures. The Plante administration is frustrated that the federal government hasn’t done enough to inform people coming into Canada about the importance of self-isolating, Radio-Canada says.

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Jonathan Cartu

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