April 6 COVID-19 update: Latest numbers, Stittsville business in the fight, paramedics’ association says Ottawa well-stocked
Special to WC Online
OTTAWA – Ottawa Public Health (OPH) is reporting Monday, April 6, 25 new cases of COVID-19 in the city and two more people have passed away after battling the virus.
Overall, the city has seen 370 positive cases of COVID-19, with 56 of those patients have since recovered.
Six people have now died in Ottawa due to the coronavirus, while 30 remain in hospital — 14 in intensive care.
The public health agency says the virus has been found in seven local institutions, including The Ottawa Hospital Civic Campus, the Ottawa Carleton Association for Persons with Developmental Disabilities, and five local retirement or long-term care homes.
There have now been a total of 4,347 cases in the province, including 1,624 resolved and 132 deaths.
The new cases reported today represent a 7.7 per cent increase in the past 24 hours, while the number of resolved cases jumped by more than 37 per cent.
A backlog of pending tests that was once at nearly 11,000 now stands at just 329.
There are now 589 people in Ontario hospitalized with COVID-19, with 216 people in intensive care and 160 of them on ventilators.
More than three dozen outbreaks have been reported in nursing homes across the province. The elderly are at particular risk for coronavirus, which can produce no or mild symptoms, but can also cause lethal pneumonia.
About half the cases in the province are in Toronto, where the latest figures indicated 25 doctors, nurses and other health-care workers in the city were infected.
Ontario has projected between 3,000 and 15,000 lives could be lost to the pandemic even with stiff stay-home restrictions.
On Sunday, the union representing correctional officers said about 40 inmates of a large women’s prison in southwestern Ontario were locked down due to an outbreak of COVID-19. Five inmates at Grand Valley Institution in Kitchener, were infected, Correctional Service Canada said.
Stittsville’s LD Tool and Die producing swabs for COVID-19 testing devies
STITTSVILLE – A nearby business, LD Tool and Die in Stittsville is producing millions of swaps for use with a new COVID-19 testing device.
The custom injection molding company has been a partner of Kanata’s Spartan Bioscience for 15 years, and the federal government just invested in the Spartan Cube – a new COVID-19 testing device which will give results on the spot, within 30 minutes.
Owner Laurie Dickson says his company has had to figure out how it’s going to go from producing tens of thousands of swabs for the cube, to millions.
Dickson has taken 2,000 sq. ft. of factory and turned into a clean area where 27 newly hired people will be packaging the product, and in another three weeks he plans to have another 27 hired.
In a matter of a couple months, LD Tool and Die is expected to go from a company of 70 to 80 employees to as many as 140 or 150.
Ontario paramedics say Ottawa is ‘well-stocked’ for next little while
ONTARIO – The Ontario Paramedics Association (OPA) says Ottawa is well-stocked for the pandemic compared to other Ontario networks.
OPA President Darryl Wilton says Ottawa has a mega-headquarters with a massive storage facility for all of its personal protection equipment (PPE), and the year’s-worth of supplies in a normal situation would, should get medical professionals in the city through the next four-and-a-half months.
“That’s if we can maintain very efficient use of that equipment on calls and reduce the unnecessary use, or for example if you tear a PPE or something and it has to be replaced,” Wilyton said in a recent interview. “So, we’re being very cautious to be able to maintain that.”
Wilton says between five and 20 per cent of paramedics in big Ontario cities like Ottawa have had to go in to isolation after being exposed to a possible COVID-19 patient, so it’s put additional stress on the system.
Most paramedics in Ontario are currently working 80 to 90-hour work weeks.
In Ottawa, paramedics have been responding to about 400 calls per day, which Wilton says isn’t unusual, but with a shorter staff and some of those calls being COVID-19-related, it’s a challenge.