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Canada at a Tipping Point in Fight Against Coronavirus, Says Frustrated Prime Minister Trudeau | World News

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canada is at a tipping point in the fight against a second wave of the novel coronavirus and health care workers are increasingly swamped, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in some of his most gloomy comments on Friday.

He spoke after health officials said authorities needed to do more now to fight the pandemic since forecasts suggest the number of new infections will continue to accelerate.

Trudeau said the second wave was “really frustrating”. He and other officials are urging people not to gather in large groups next Monday on Canadian Thanksgiving, a major holiday.

“We are at a tipping point in this pandemic. Not only is the second wave under way, (but) yesterday we hit the highest daily record for cases, well above what we saw this spring,” he told a news conference.

“I know this is discouraging … the increase in new cases is putting an enormous pressure on hospitals and health care workers, who are more and more swamped.”

Health officials project the cumulative death toll could reach between 9,690 and 9,800 by Oct. 17, up from 9,557 now. Total cases could total 188,150 to 197,830 by the same date, compared to 175,559 today.

Almost 80% of cases have been recorded in Ontario and Quebec, the two most populous provinces.

Ontario will close indoor gyms and cinemas and ban restaurants from serving food indoors. The 28-day measures, which apply to the major regions of Toronto, Peel and Ottawa, start on Saturday.

Ontario could experience “worst-case scenarios seen in northern Italy and New York City” if trends continue, the provincial government said.

Trudeau’s federal government, which has already announced more than C$210 billion ($160 billion) in aid for people and businesses hit by the virus, said on Friday it would launch an improved program for enterprises having trouble pay rents.

(Additional reporting by Julie Gordon in Ottawa, Moira Warburton in Toronto and Allison Lampert in Montreal; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Grant McCool)

Copyright 2020 Thomson Reuters.

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Empire Communities Announces Partnership with Community Food Centres Canada

Vaughan, Ontario, Oct. 07, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Empire Communities, one of North America’s largest privately-owned builder-developers, has entered into a strategic partnership with Community Food Centres Canada (CFCC). Their work helps to support families struggling with food insecurity and programs that help to promote resources for accessing healthy food, the development of food skills and education promoting health and well-being. The sponsorship names Empire as the Community Partner in their innovative program, The Big Social, the CFCC’s second annual national fundraising event raising money for food programs.

“With COVID-19 affecting so many families across southern Ontario and the communities in which we build we felt that a partnership with CFCC was a cause that could directly impact and help the local families in Empire communities, specifically in Southwestern Ontario where Empire has a strong presence,” says Sue MacKay, Vice President of Marketing at Empire Communities. “Empire has long been a supporter of causes and organizations assisting with the promotion of health, education, sport and well-being, and with the uncertainties brought on by the pandemic this type of support is needed now more than ever.”

This year’s Big Social event will be completely virtual, bringing thousands of Canadians together from October 9 to 25 to host a small meal or virtual dinner party with friends and family to fundraise and raise awareness. Money raised will support community members to get access to the supplies they need to eat well and cook healthy.

“Food is an incredible tool for bringing people together. That’s what our community partners do each and every day,” says Nick Saul, CEO of Community Food Centres Canada. “Food insecurity and isolation are at an all-time high, and The Big Social provides a safe and valuable way to give back during COVID-19.”

 

COMMUNITY FOOD CENTRES CANADA

Community Food Centres Canada (cfccanada.ca) builds dynamic and responsive Community Food Centres and food programs that support people to eat well, connect with their neighbours and contribute, through advocacy and mutual support, to a more just and inclusive Canada. With our 200+ partners, we work to eradicate poverty, food insecurity and improve the health and well-being of low-income Canadians.

 

EMPIRE COMMUNITIES

Empire Communities (empirecommunities.com) is a residential builder/developer involved in all sectors of the new home building industry, including both low‐rise and high‐rise built forms. Celebrating over 25 years of building inspiring new places to live, Empire has an established tradition of creating prestigious award-winning new homes, communities and amenities and has earned a reputation for outstanding attention to detail and customer service. Since its inception in 1993, Empire has built over 20,000 new homes and condos. Today, Empire is one of the largest privately held homebuilders in North America with current communities in Toronto, Southwestern Ontario and the Southern U.S. States.

 

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CONTACT: Daniela Tirone Empire Communities 416-627-3896 [email protected]

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Dying Mom’s Video of Hospital Staff Taunting Her Sparks Outrage Over Racism in Canada: Reports

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The death of an indigenous woman in the Canadian province of Quebec is sparking outcry and investigations after a shocking video showed her being verbally abused by hospital staff — and many believe it was racially motivated, according to multiple reports.

A heartbreaking livestream by Joyce Echaquan before her death on Monday depicts hospital staff members near her as she cried out in pain at Lanaudière Integrated Health and Social Services Center (CISSS) in Joliette. Echaquan’s Facebook Live footage — which was reviewed by local outlets and could be disturbing to some viewers — was publicly shared by Journal Métro and reportedly features nurses insulting the 37-year-old mother in French.

“You made some bad choices, my dear,” one of the nurses was recorded saying, according to The Guardian‘s translation. “What are your children going to think, seeing you like this?”

“She’s good at having sex, more than anything else,” another nurse said, according to the outlet.

One nurse was heard calling Echaquan “stupid as hell,” Canada’s CBC Television reported.

Echaquan’s husband, Carol Dubé, told the outlet that he believes the nurses meant to humiliate his wife.

“I have seven children who find themselves without a mother,” Dubé said. “I am sad. I am so sad.”

In a statement to PEOPLE, CISSS announced one of the two nurses who were recorded in Echaquan’s video has been fired.

RELATED: Nurse Allegedly Caught Beating Special Needs Boy on Camera as Mom Watches in Horror: ‘It Was Heart-Wrenching’

According to CBC, Echaquan was complaining of stomach pains when she arrived at the hospital two days before her death. A family member told the outlet she suffered from various health conditions and did not trust the hospital due to previous experiences.

“She always said, at the hospital, they never did anything,” Sebastien Moar, Echaquan’s cousin, told CBC. “They just made sure she wasn’t hurting. She always had appointments and she said the nurses seemed fed up with her.”

Two separate investigations — a coroner’s inquiry and an administrative probe — have been launched, the outlet added, citing the Quebec government.

Because she was a member of the Atikamekw people, a community of indigenous inhabitants in Quebec, some believe Echaquan’s treatment was seeded in racism.

“Joyce Echaquan went to the hospital for medical help. Instead, she was told she’s stupid, only good for sex and she would be better off dead as she pleaded for help before dying,” read a statement from the Native Women’s Association of Canada.

RELATED: 2 Women Charged with Sexually Abusing Nursing Home Patients: ‘We Were Shocked’

“This racism in the health care system is deeply disturbing and unacceptable,” the group added.

This sentiment was echoed by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who called the hospital staff’s actions proof of “systemic racism” in the country.

“This is yet another example of systemic racism. It is quite simply unacceptable in Canada,” Trudeau said, according to the Toronto Star.

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Canada, biggest provinces promise new steps to fight second COVID wave

By Allison Martell

TORONTO (Reuters) – Canada’s federal authorities and its two biggest provinces on Tuesday promised new measures to combat a second COVID-19 wave that is notching up as many cases as during the pandemic’s peak in April.

Canada reported new 2,176 infections on Monday, taking the total to 155,301. The death toll rose by 10 to 9,278.

Government minister Dominic LeBlanc, who chairs the cabinet’s coronavirus committee, called the surge “very worrying”.

Ontario, the most populous of the 10 provinces, said it would limit visitors to long-term care homes for the elderly in areas with high community spread. Most deaths in Canada have taken place in homes for seniors.

In Quebec, the second most populous, premier Francois Legault said financial support for businesses hurt by new COVID-19 restrictions would be announced soon. The province is closing bars and dine-in services at restaurants in hot spots for 28 days.

“The situation is still critical,” Legault told reporters in Quebec City.

In Ottawa, health officials said they expected to authorize new antigen tests for COVID-19, which can provide rapid results outside of a lab. This should provide additional testing as the second wave overwhelms laboratories, they said.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who last week said the government would provide C$440 million ($329 million) to a global program designed to ensure fair access to COVID-19 vaccines, on Tuesday said Canada was giving an additional C$400 million in humanitarian and development funding.

Separately on Tuesday, the federal government said it had signed an agreement up to buy 7.9 million Abbott ID NOW rapid point of care tests, pending Health Canada approval.

The ID NOW is not an antigen test, but the instruments used to analyze it can be run outside of a major lab, giving rapid results at a clinic or hospital.

(With additional reporting by David Ljunggren and Steve Scherer in Ottawa, Allison Lampert in Montreal and Moira Warburton in Vancouver, writing by David Ljunggren; Editing by Bernadette Baum, David Gregorio and John Stonestreet)

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KA Imaging’s Portable Dual-energy X-ray Receives Canadian Medical Device Licence from Health Canada

Canadian market comprises more than 1,000 hospitals. Number of medical and diagnostic laboratories (which include x-ray) surpasses 3,000.

A Canadian Medical Device Licence was issued September 24 by Health Canada for Reveal 35C™, created by KA Imaging – a University of Waterloo spin-off company.

Reveal is a portable dual-energy X-ray detector that enables bone and soft-tissue differentiation without motion artifacts in a single X-ray exposure. The detector simultaneously delivers DR, bone, and tissue images in one shot. Reveal can be taken to the bedside of vulnerable patients in hospital and used easily to aid emergency procedures. It is also affordable and comes at a quarter of the price of many fixed dual-energy systems.

“Getting this Health Canada licence is a major step forward for KA Imaging, especially coupled with the recent FDA clearance. As a Canadian company we are thrilled to have received Health Canada’s approval and eagerly anticipate providing our solution to the Canadian market for advance in the field of X-ray,” said Amol Karnick, President and CEO of KA Imaging.

Statistics from the Industry Canada database from 2019 show that there are more than 1,000 hospitals (including general and specialized facilities) in the country, and more than 3,000 medical and diagnostic laboratories – including X-ray services. In addition, because the detector is portable – it is the only portable dual-energy solution on the market – less obvious sectors can also benefit from the technology.

“At long-term care facilities, which care for vulnerable populations that can suffer from mobility limitations or health concerns, taking the detector to the patient can be very beneficial,” said Dr. Karim S. Karim, CTO of KA Imaging.

Reveal is already being used in clinical trials with promising results. The detector is being tested on patients suspected of having lung cancer at Grand River Hospital in Kitchener, and for detection of pneumonia (including COVID-19) in a Toronto-based hospital.

“Early triaging is an essential countermeasure to prevent the spread of COVID-19 infection, and we are confident that our technology can make a significant contribution,” said Karim.

View source version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20200930005044/en/

Contacts

Fernanda Fraga
[email protected]
226 215 9897

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Covid-19 Cases Jump in Canada, Prompting New Restrictions

OTTAWA—Canada is seeing a sharp rise in cases of Covid-19, alarming health officials and triggering a second round of lockdowns and strict distancing recommendations.

Average daily case counts have nearly reached the peak levels set in April, according to the country’s chief public-health officer. Confirmed cases for the past seven days—9,636 ended Sept. 28—rose 29% from the previous seven-day period, according to data from Johns Hopkins University, and are roughly triple the tally from the last seven days in August.

“This is worrisome,” Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada’s chief public-health officer, said Tuesday. “Things have escalated quickly and can escalate further.”

Nearly all of the growth in confirmed infections is in the two biggest provinces, Ontario and Quebec, which account for nearly two-thirds of the population but 80% of cases. Overall, though, Canada’s case count has been much lower than those of the U.S. and Europe.

The pickup can be partly attributed to transmission at private social gatherings, such as parties hosted by young adults, dinner parties and weddings, health officials say. Infectious-disease experts said other factors include children returning to school, workplaces reopening and cooler weather that is driving people indoors.

Some officials—including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau—warn a second wave of infections could produce more cases than witnessed in the spring.

Canada, with a population of 38 million, has recorded around 155,000 Covid-19 cases to date. So far, the country has avoided the wave in infections seen in the U.S. U.K., and Europe, and its health care system hasn’t been overburdened. Nearly all regions in Canada began lifting restrictions starting in May after some initial success containing the spread.

Canada is starting to see “exponential growth that is starting to mimic what we have seen in the U.K. and what was seen a month and a half earlier in France and Spain,” said Dr. Andrew Morris, a professor at the University of Toronto’s medicine department and an infectious-disease specialist.

Last week, the U.K. introduced fresh restrictions to quell its second wave, whereas France and Spain have adopted more targeted measures such as earlier closing times for restaurants and taverns, and limits on when residents can leave their neighborhoods.

Quebec moved on Monday to re-impose restrictions. It decided to ban bars and restaurants from offering outdoor and indoor service for a 28-day period in Montreal—Canada’s second-largest city—and the provincial capital, Quebec City, starting Oct. 1. It has also ordered libraries, museums and movie theaters to shut down for that period, and prohibited gatherings at homes with few exceptions.

Ontario, Canada’s most populous province, has resisted imposing widespread restrictions, instead relying on people’s voluntary cooperation with distancing and staying home when ill. Now, the City of Toronto is considering further reducing seating capacity in restaurants and other measures targeting social interaction.

“Our collective actions will decide whether we have a wave or a tsunami,” warned Ontario’s head of government, Doug Ford.

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