OTTAWA -- Good morning. Here is the latest news on COVID-19 and its impact on Ottawa.

Fast Facts:

  • Ontario will lay out the next phase of the COVID-19 response in today's provincial budget
  • A COVID-19 outbreak has been declared at the Ottawa Paramedic Service
  • 48 new cases of COVID-19 in Ottawa on Wednesday
  • The City of Ottawa is projecting a $153.5 million deficit in the 2021 budget due to the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Ottawa's top doctor proposes mandatory masks while working out in gyms


Who should get a test?

Ottawa Public Health says there are four reasons to seek testing for COVID-19:

  • You are showing COVID-19 symptoms. OR
  • You have been exposed to a confirmed case of the virus, as informed by Ottawa Public Health or exposure notification through the COVID Alert app. OR
  • You are a resident or work in a setting that has a COVID-19 outbreak, as identified and informed by Ottawa Public Health. OR
  • You are eligible for testing as part of a targeted testing initiative directed by the Ministry of Health or the Ministry of Long-Term Care.

Where to get tested for COVID-19 in Ottawa:

The COVID-19 assessment centre at 151 Brewer Way is open seven days a week from 8:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Appointments are required in most cases but LIMITED walk-up capacity is available.

To book a test for an adult, click here.

CHEO Assessment Centre at Brewer Arena – 151 Brewer Way is open seven days a week from 8:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Testing is available by appointment only.

To book a test for a child under the age of 18, click here.

The COVID-19 care clinic at 595 Moodie Dr. is open from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday to Friday for people with escalating symptoms and in need of medical attention.

To book an appointment, click here. 

The COVID-19 care clinic at 1485 Heron Rd. is open from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday to Friday for people with escalating symptoms and in need of medical attention.

To book an appointment, click here.

The COVID-19 care clinic at the Ray Friel Recreation Complex – 1585 Tenth Line Rd. is open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. There are two options available for visitors: a test only or an assessment by a doctor and a test.

To book an appointment, click here.

The COVID-19 drive-thru assessment centre at 300 Coventry Road is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

To book an appointment, click here.

See here for a list of other testing sites in Ottawa and eastern Ontario.

COVID-19 screening tool:

The COVID-19 screening tool for students heading back to in-person classes can be found here.


Classic Symptoms: fever, new or worsening cough, shortness of breath

Other symptoms: sore throat, difficulty swallow, new loss of taste or smell, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, pneumonia, new or unexplained runny nose or nasal congestion

Less common symptoms: unexplained fatigue, muscle aches, headache, delirium, chills, red/inflamed eyes, croup

Ontario to lay out next phase of COVID-19 response in Thursday's budget

The Ontario Progressive Conservative Government will table its first budget since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic today.

Finance Minister Rod Phillips says the budget will provide a multi-year outlook that will build on the measures presented in the spring.

There will also be details of the new standard for long-term care announced this week, which would see nursing home residents receive an average of four hours of daily direct care.

Queen's Park

48 cases of COVID-19 in Ottawa on Wednesday, no new deaths linked to the virus

 Forty-eight new cases of COVID-19 were reported in Ottawa on Wednesday, the second straight day with less than 50 new cases of the virus.

The 48 new cases follows 28 new cases on Tuesday, the lowest number of new daily cases in more than six weeks.

Ottawa Public Health also reported zero new deaths linked to novel coronavirus. 

Since the first case of COVID-19 on March 11, there have been 7,273 laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ottawa, including 330 deaths.


COVID-19 outbreak declared within Ottawa Paramedic Service

Ottawa Public Health has declared a COVID-19 outbreak within the Ottawa Paramedic Service following two confirmed cases of novel coronavirus. 

In a memo to Council, Emergency and Protective Services General Manager Anthony Di Monte says the current declared outbreak status is based on two related cases of COVID-19, "And is not widespread throughout the workplace."

Ottawa Public Health declares a COVID-19 outbreak when two or more laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 have an epidemiological link in the workplace within a 14-day period, where both cases could have reasonably acquired their infection in the workplace.

Ottawa Paramedic, Ambulance

2021 draft budget: $3.9B in operating costs with 3 per cent tax increase; $153M deficit if pandemic lasts all year

City staff tabled the 2021 City of Ottawa budget on Wednesday, which includes a proposed three per cent property tax hike and a 2.5 per cent increase in transit fares.

But the draft document warns the COVID-19 pandemic could impact the city's finances next year.

If the COVID-19 pandemic and the related restrictions continue all next year, the city is projecting a $153 million budget deficit.

While Mayor Jim Watson said he's confident the Federal and Ontario Governments will cover deficits next year, City Manager Steve Kanellakos said staff will have a contingency plan that includes using reserves and delaying capital projects.

Ottawa City Hall

Ottawa's top doctor recommends wearing a mask while working out in a gym during the COVID-19 pandemic

Shorts, shirt, running shoes … and a mask!

Medical Officer of Health Dr. Vera Etches is recommending face masks be mandatory while you exercise in gyms.

Ottawa will move into the new "restrict" level at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, allowing gyms, fitness centres, bars and restaurants to reopen during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The new rules for sports, gyms and fitness centres includes a maximum 50 people in the facility at all times, required screening of patrons and appointments for entry. The new rules released by the Ontario Government state face coverings are required except when exercising.

"It would have implications. People would have to decrease the intensity of their exercise. There is vigorous cardiovascular exercise; you can't do with a mask on so you'd have to move that outdoors," said Dr. Etches during an interview on Newstalk 580 CFRA's The Morning Rush with Bill Carroll on Wednesday morning.

"I spoke with different people in the fitness industry. I think that, like restaurants, these businesses are doing their best to put in new ways of work. I think there are layers of precaution; like in schools we have layers of precaution."